Preparations underway for Peel funeral

FINAL preparations are today being made for the funeral of John Peel.The service for the Suffolk DJ will take place at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds, next Friday, and will be open to the public.

FINAL preparations are today being made for the funeral of John Peel.

The service for the Suffolk DJ will take place at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds, next Friday, and will be open to the public.

The ceremony will be taken by the Rev Canon Deidre Parmenter, rural dean of Stowmarket, and starts at 1pm. It will be followed by a private family service.

Mr Peel's family are still considering the details of the service, but it is understood there will be provision made for an overflow of fans at the cathedral which has room for around 900 people.

A spokesman for St Edmundsbury Cathedral said today: "There are plans for the area to the south of the Cathedral to be made into an place where people can stand. However, plans are still being formulated."

Mr Peel, of Great Finborough, near Stowmarket, died last week while on holiday in Peru with his wife Sheila. His body was flown back to the UK on Monday night.

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Friends in the village, where Mr Peel lived for 30 years, were today still coming to terms with his death and pledged to show their respects at the funeral.

Carol Armstrong, who was a member of the youth group that Mr Peel set up in Great Finborough, said: "I am still in shock and can't believe it has happened. Until his memorial service I don't suppose it will sink in.

"When I first heard, I wanted to go because I went to his wedding and I have done everything major with him. But I don't like funerals.

"The village has been pretty quiet. I have been in the local pub a few times and nobody has said anything."

Mr Peel was BBC Radio 1's longest-serving DJ and also presented Radio 4's Home Truths.

After his death, tributes also flooded in from the music industry and thousands of listeners from across the world.

n. What do you think about John Peel's funeral being open to the public? Write to us at Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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