Now that S Club 7 have reformed, here's a look back to when Paul Cattermole quit the group to focus on his nu metal band

Skua, featuring S Club 7's Paul Cattermole
(Image credit: Skua Facebook)

The assassination of JFK. American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin taking giant leaps for mankind on the Moon. The death of Princess Diana. Events forever enshrined in the global consciousness. 

March 28, 2002 may not be a date which has been imprinted in history on quite the same level, but for millions of music fans - well, tens of thousands, at least - it was a life-changing, emotional day, for this was the day on which S Club 7's Paul Cattermole announced that he was leaving the pop superstars in order to focus his attention on the world of nu metal, rejoining his old school pals Steve Kelly and Matthew Tunnicliffe in St. Albans quartet Skua.

"I want a change musically," Cattermole, at 25, S Club 7's oldest member at the time, told The Sun newspaper.

An S Club spokeswoman described the split as "amicable." The Guardian later reported, 'No one in the group resented him for leaving – but no one asked him to stay.'

"I don’t mind admitting, I was upset," the upset singer admitted.

In 2002, the news of the split was greeted with mixed emotions by S Club 7's fanbase.

"Paul was my fave and I don't think S Club will be the same without him," Maria, 14, from London told CBBC's Newsround. "I will definitely be more of a fan of Paul as a solo artist than of S Club 6!"

"I think Paul's got what he wanted out of S Club (contacts and money) and now he's gonna use that to make himself bigger than the rest of the group!" mused 14-year-old Stuart, from Mansfield.

Sammi, 16, from London offered a more brutal take on the split.

"Paul can never make it by himself," she told Newsround. "He can hardly sing, let alone dance. And he also is too fat and ugly. But I wish S clubbers all the luck. "

Unfortunately for Cattermole, though nu-metal was in rude health in 2002, with Korn (Untouchables) and Papa Roach (Lovehatetragedy) scoring UK top 5 albums, Skua failed to attract the attention of A&R scouts: without a record deal, the quartet split in 2003.

However, their story did not end there, for in 2014, the group re-emerged with the 10-track album Kneel, which you can hear below. Truthfully, there are worse nu metal albums which have sold north of one million copies...

Louder wishes Cattermole well with his return to the spotlight. No Skua tracks are likely to feature in S Club 7's arena October tour setlist.

Skua, featuring Paul Cattermole, in 2002

Skua, featuring Paul Cattermole second from left, in the studio with producer John Brough in 2002 (Image credit: Skua Facebook)
Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.