Church bells across the country have rung out in memory of Captain Sir Tom Moore as his funeral service got under way in Bedford.

The NHS fundraising hero, 100, is being laid to rest at a private service attended by only immediate family due to the pandemic.

At around 11.30am, his funeral cortege left his home in Bedfordshire heading towards Bedford Crematorium, arriving slightly before midday.

People have been finding their own ways to pay tribute to the WW2 veteran who inspired the nation during the first Covid lockdown last year.

Churches up and down the UK joined the tributes at midday by ringing their bells in unison.



The funeral is also being marked by a flypast from a C-47 Dakota, a Second World War era plane.

Soldiers from the Yorkshire Regiment are carrying Sir Tom’s coffin to the crematorium, with a firing party, a bugler and a ceremonial guard also forming part of the service.

Singer Michael Buble has also recorded a version of the song Smile to be played at the funeral.

Earlier, the deputy Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, David Pearson, laid a wreath in Keighley – Sir Tom’s birthplace – on behalf of the Queen.

The wreath featured 200 white roses around a picture of the late record-breaking fundraiser.

Wreaths of poppies were also laid by local MP Robbie Moore and the town’s mayor and mayoress, Peter Corkindale and Clare Abberton.

Sir Tom was made an honorary freeman of Keighley last summer when he said ‘it really is great to be back’ as he watched a plaque unveiled in his honour.

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