Blue singer Duncan James has said that the treatment of gay people in Russia is ‘scary’, and that he feels lucky to live in the UK.

The singer, who came out in 2009, made the comments this afternoon, after running to the top of London’s Tower 42 with bandmate Lee Ryan to raise money for Shelter.

According to Digital Spy, he said: “[In] Russia [the LGBT community] is having a terrible time at the minute. It’s quite scary when you think about the stuff that happens in our world that we live in right now. We’re very lucky living in the UK, I guess.

“We live in 2014. We should be able to celebrate who we are as people without having to feel frightened or scared.

“I think it’s really important, especially in this country, that there’s so much more awareness and people are more educated.

“People are still, unfortunately, being thrown out of their homes because of their sexuality and because their families aren’t dealing with it, which I think is completely wrong.

“I’m very lucky to have gone through what I’ve gone through publicly, and hopefully I can give help to people and let them know that actually there’s nothing wrong in being who you are.”

Earlier this year James laughed off claims he had a sexual relationship with Ryan, who confessed while appearing on Celebrity Big Brother that he had experimented with men in the past.

Earlier today, a campaign was launched to move the 2018 World Cup away from Russia, due to the country’s anti-gay laws.