Drummer Lee Rigby: Military funeral set for killed Woolwich soldier

A military funeral for Drummer Lee Rigby is to take place in Greater Manchester on 12 July.

Drummer Rigby, of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, was killed near his army barracks in Woolwich, south-east London, in May.

The funeral will be a private service at Bury Parish Church, broadcast to outsiders via a PA system, an MoD spokesman said.

Two men are due to go on trial in November accused of his murder.

The body of the soldier, from Middleton near Manchester, will be brought in to the church for a vigil the day before the funeral takes place, it is understood.

A parade of drummers will escort the cortege shortly after 16:00 BST on 11 July, to be met by a guard of honour of 40 soldiers drawn from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.

The chaplain of 2nd Battalion of Royal Regiment of Fusiliers will conduct a service for the family. The body will be guarded overnight by members of his regiment.

'Line the streets'

Colin Lambert, leader of Rochdale Council, said Drummer Rigby's funeral would be an opportunity for the communities of Bury and Rochdale to join together to remember a man who served his country.

"We are all united in sadness at this tragic event," he said.

"Now the details have been announced, we would encourage all residents who would like to pay their respects to line the streets of Bury on Friday or sign the book of condolence."

Bury has strong links with Drummer Rigby's regiment, the 2nd Battalion, Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, whose roots go back to the Bury-based Lancashire Fusiliers.

A private committal will then take place at Middleton Cemetery.

Michael Adebolajo, 28, from Romford, east London, and Michael Adebowale, 22, from Greenwich, south-east London, are accused of Drummer Rigby's murder.

Mr Adebolajo is also accused of the attempted murder of two police officers and possession of a firearm with intent to cause others to believe that violence would be used.

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