Full house for Worthing's first weekend funeral

IT was a case of '˜House Full' in both chapels at Worthing Crematorium on Saturday morning as almost 400 family and friends gathered together to say goodbye to Peter Lock.

Peter Lock pictured with members of Worthing Musical Comedy Society in 2013
Peter Lock pictured with members of Worthing Musical Comedy Society in 2013

Peter, 91, of Cotswold Road, Durrington, was a member of Worthing Musical Comedy Society for almost 70 years, as well as being one of the original members of the nursing staff at St Barnabas House since its inception in 1973.

Also a World War II naval veteran, Peter’s arrival at the crematorium was greeted by a guard of honour by the local Royal Naval Association including four standard bearers, while his coffin was draped with the White Ensign, the flag of the Royal Navy.

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With in excess of 250 in the Kingswood Chapel, Crematorium staff opened the Muntham Chapel and the service was relayed on the television.

The service was conducted by the Reverend David Farrant, and included tributes from Peter’s three sons, Robert, John and Peter as well as long time friend Ernie Blackman, former St Barnabas colleague Dr Alan Kingsbury ad WMCS’s Tandy Roberts reading out her husband Andy’s tribute.

Funeral director Ian Hart said: “When Peter sadly passed away we knew how loved and respected he was right across the local community, so when we discussed the possibility of a Saturday morning funeral, I immediately contacted Andy Edwards at the council who said it was something they were looking to introduce.

“With both chapels reaching their combined seated capacity of 260 long before the funeral service began, it was clear that the Lock family’s decision to have the service on a Saturday was a very good idea.

Had we gone with original plan for last Friday, January 29, Peter’s funeral might have impinged on other services before and after his, which is something as someone who did so much for other people throughout his life I know he wouldn’t have wanted.

“It was fitting that a wonderful, uplifting service, finished with Peter receiving a standing ovation and the congregation leaving the chapels to his signature tune of ‘Spread a little happiness’, which is exactly what he spent his life doing.”

Peter’s son John added: “Whilst there was an obvious sad aspect to the day, it was a real celebration of an extraordinary person who touched so many lives, my family and I would like to thank everyone who came to remember our Dad.”

After the service, a reception was held at the Emanuel Church Hall, where guests were entertained by The Featherstone Five Jazz band who had previously played at Peter’s 90th Birthday celebrations.

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