A fitting farewell for former serviceman following appeal for mourners to attend funeral

More than 80 people turned up to Mr Goodwin's funeral.

More than 80 people turned up to Mr Goodwin's funeral. - Credit: Archant

More than 80 people responded to an appeal to attend the funeral of a former serviceman from Great Gidding, who died without any family.

Mr Goodwin was proud of his service in the Royal Pioneer Corp.

Mr Goodwin was proud of his service in the Royal Pioneer Corp. - Credit: Archant

Leslie Goodwin died on January 4, aged 82, but had no surviving relatives to plan his funeral or attend the service.

Following an appeal made by a branch of Co-operative Funeral Care in the Hunts Post last month, dozens of people turned out on February 7 to say a final goodbye to Leslie.

Having never married, Mr Goodwin had no family, but his friends and neighbours in Great Gidding were quick to step in and appealed for members of the community to give him a fitting send off.

The funeral, which was held at Peterborough Crematorium, saw old friends and neighbours in attendance, as well as people who had never met Mr Goodwin before. Barry Deloverot-Lawson, who works for the Sawtry branch of Co-operative Funeral Care said: “The sun was shining and it wasn’t even that cold. Around 80 people were there, including nine branches of the Royal British Legion, their standard bearers flying their colours, and we were escorted by eight motorcycles.”

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Mr Goodwin served with the Royal Pioneer Corps during the 1950s before going to work for Perkins, in Peterborough, for 40 years.

Mr Deloverot-Lawson added: “A number of soldiers, stationed at RAF Wyton attended in their uniforms, and incidentally they were from the regiment into which Les’ regiment was incorporated.

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“The crematorium was full, and the celebrant, who was also a neighbour of Les read a fond tribute, and his other neighbour, Steve, read a poem he had written about Les being his neighbour.

“In all, it was a very well-attended ceremony with many of his old friends and neighbours, as well as those who, despite never meeting Les in person, wished to bid him a fitting farewell.”

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