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Thatcher funeral: Fitting tribute to 'a Titan'


Baroness Thatcher's funeral was a fitting tribute to a "Titan of our time," according to MP Andrew Robathan.

Mr Robathan was among the 2,000 guests at the funeral, which was watched on TV by millions of people around the world.

Thousands of people lined the route of the procession as Mrs Thatcher's coffin, draped in the union flag, was carried to St Paul's Cathedral on a First World War gun carriage.

The Queen led the mourners during the 55-minute service, which was attended by Government ministers, former Prime Ministers and several celebrities.

Speaking afterwards, Mr Robathan, MP for South Leicestershire, said: "People may have not have agreed with her but they could not doubt she did what she thought was right.

"In many ways, she was a Titan of our time. Many say we will not see her like again. But I hope and I think that we will."

At the service, the Bishop of London, the Rt Rev Richard Chartres, told the congregation: "After the storm of a life led in the heat of political controversy, there is a great calm.

"The storm of conflicting opinions centres on the Mrs Thatcher who became a symbolic figure – even an ism.

"Today, the remains of the real Margaret Hilda Thatcher are here at her funeral service.

"Lying here, she is one of us, subject to the common destiny of all human beings."

Mr Robathan said the bishop had struck the right tone.

"It was a funeral and not a memorial service," he said.

During the service, the epistle was read by Mrs Thatcher's granddaughter, Amanda, and the gospel was read by David Cameron.

Leicester East MP Keith Vaz, who also attended, said the funeral was "a fitting tribute to a remarkable figure who dominated British politics for a decade".

He said: "The feeling in St Paul's Cathedral was one of great reverence for the former Prime Minister.

"I thought the service was very lovely. The readings by her granddaughter, Amanda, and David Cameron were quite moving and I enjoyed the sermon delivered by the bishop.

"Margaret Thatcher was the first Prime Minister I questioned when I was elected to the House of Commons in 1987 and she always treated me with the utmost courtesy.

"I thought it was important to pay my respects at the funeral today."

Rutland and Melton MP Alan Duncan, a friend of the former Prime Minister, attended wearing his Privy Council uniform.

He said: "Mrs Thatcher once told me that uniforms are very important.

"So I thought I would honour her by wearing the tunic and the trousers with a gold stripe down the sides."

Commenting on the service, he said: "It was both sad and magnificent.

"It was a suitable send off for someone who did so much for this country. Her presence filled the cathedral.

"It was the kind of ceremony that only we British can accomplish.

"The atmosphere outside the cathedral was respectful, with many people applauding. I did not hear any protesters."

The final blessing was given by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby.

The service was followed by a private cremation at Mortlake Crematorium.

She is one of us, Page 9.

Thatcher funeral: Fitting tribute to 'a Titan'

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