Wales

Hundreds attend cyclist councillor Paul James' funeral

Paul James Image copyright Plaid Cymru
Image caption Councillor Paul James had been preparing for a charity bike ride

Hundreds of people have attended the funeral of a councillor who died while cycling near Aberystwyth.

Paul James was raising money for a charity bike ride when he was struck on the A487 between Waun Fawr and Bow Street in April.

A fundraising appeal he had set up surpassed its £10,000 target after his death.

The ride is due to go ahead in his memory later this month with the appeal at more than £11,400 and still rising.

Image caption Among the mourners at the funeral were politicians and friends of Mr James from the armed forces

Mr James's funeral was held at St Michael's Church at noon on Saturday with a collection towards the appeal also being held in his memory.

The Ceredigion councillor, who represented Llanbadarn Fawr Sulien, had been in training for a 140-mile (225km) bike ride.

He planned to cycle from the Dyfi ward cardiac monitoring unit at Bronglais Hospital, Aberystwyth, to the cardio-thoracic high dependency unit at Swansea's Morriston Hospital.

Image copyright Paul James
Image caption Paul James's last newsletter to residents was completed by his friends

Councillor Gareth Davies said people felt it was important to continue with the ride as he was a "very active member of the community".

He said local businesses were also continuing to hold collections around Aberystwyth.

Mr James' regular newsletter to residents was only partly written when he died but it was completed by his friends and it was sent out to residents in his ward and the wider area.

"He was very passionate about the village and giving the best to residents," said Mr Davies.

"He was a giant of a man whose presence would be known everywhere he went."

In a statement last month, his family said: "Paul was loving husband and father who lived life to the full."

Image copyright Alexanders Estate Agency
Image caption Rhian Elizabeth Daniell at Alexanders Estate Agency helping with the collection

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