Service held to remember nine vulnerable people who died during pandemic

The second national lockdown has forced St Edmundsbury Cathedral to cancel its Christmas fair Picture: GREGG BROWN

The service was held at St Edmundsbury Cathedral - Credit: Gregg Brown

More than 100 people attended a cathedral service in Bury St Edmunds at the weekend to remember nine vulnerable people who died during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The nine men and women, who had been supported by the Bury Drop In charity, died during the Covid crisis, and a service was held at St Edmundsbury Cathedral on Saturday. 

While not all died from Covid-19, their deaths are said to be as a direct result of lack of services available during the pandemic. 

Founder of the Bury Drop In Centre, David Bonnett Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Founder of the Bury Drop In Centre, David Bonnett Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

The Very Reverend Joe Hawes, dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, led the service, which included candle lighting, music and prayers. 

Some family members of those who died were in attendance, including the parents and brother of artist Will Crump. 

Mr Crump, 48, died in July 2020 from severe burns following an incident where he caught fire.

Penny Fowler with her son Will and husband Martin in Bury St Edmunds.

Penny Fowler with her son Will Crump and husband Martin in Bury St Edmunds - Credit: Noreen Drislane

David Bonnett, one of the founding members of Bury Drop In, which supports homeless people in the area, said the service was "very moving". 

"What was good was that we remembered these nine people we had lost and we mentioned their names a number of times, he said. 

"Some of the families were there so that they have a little bit of closure.

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"One of our guests who knew a lot of the people and was friends with them said because their funerals were during lockdown, it was mainly family only and friends weren't able to go and say goodbye.

"So this was an opportunity for everybody to join together and make sure their names are not forgotten. 

"It was great that people came along and supported it. 

"It was a very moving service. Great thanks to the dean and everybody at the cathedral who made such an effort on our behalf."

The Very Reverend Joe Hawes, Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral 

The Very Reverend Joe Hawes, Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral - Credit: Archant

Speaking last week, the Very Revd Hawes said: "This is one of the jobs given to a cathedral; to name those who might otherwise be forgotten, to give voice to the voiceless and to tell their stories."

Alongside the nine guests remembered, the service also remembered a volunteer from Bury Drop In who also passed away during this time.

For more information on Bury Drop In, visit the charity's website here

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