LONDON-George Michael’s family have blocked plans for a tribute concert in his honour.

The ‘Praying For Time’ hitmaker - who died at the age of 53 last December - had been due to be honoured by Childline founder Dame Esther Rantzen but she’s had to shelve the gig because the former Wham! singer’s estate wouldn’t approve the event. Esther, 77, had already moved to book London’s Royal Albert Hall for the concert , which would have benefitted Childline.

She told the Daily Mirror newspaper: ‘’There will no longer be a tribute concert because his family said no.’’

And the veteran presenter thinks it is a ‘’real shame’’ the event will no longer take place as it would have given fans of George - who gave the £2 million proceeds from his 1996 single ‘Jesus to a Child’ to the charity - the chance to say a proper goodbye to their idol.

She added: ‘’It was a real shame as I’d have loved to celebrate his music and give the fans a chance to say goodbye - and it would have been to benefit his favourite charity, too. ‘’Once the family say no there’s nothing we can do.’’ George’s estate declined to comment on the cancellation. They simply said: ‘’We don’t usually comment on private or business matters.’’

The former ‘That’s Life!’ host previously admitted she thought a concert would be a ‘’tremendous’’ way to honour the generous singer.

Speaking earlier this year, she said: ‘’It is still on the cards and we are still hoping it will happen, but we haven’t approached his family yet - we don’t want to be insensitive and we have been waiting for the right time.

‘’He was so extraordinary in his generosity to Childline - he absolutely got our vision - and we would love to be able to pay tribute to him in our 30th year.

‘’The idea we have at the moment is for the group of charities he supported to join together for the concert . That’s our hope.

‘’It would be a tremendous way of fundraising in his memory.’’