Hundreds to attend the funeral of Sir Norman Wisdom

Image caption,
Sir Norman Wisdom died on 4 October at Abbotswood nursing home

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the funeral of Sir Norman Wisdom on 22 October, according to the Archdeacon of the Isle of Man.

The Venerable Brian Smith is currently in discussion with Sir Norman's family about the structure of the service.

Sir Norman's coffin will be brought via Douglas promenade to St George's church on a horse-drawn hearse.

The 95-year-old comedian died on 4 October at Abbotswood nursing home in Ballasalla, Isle of Man.

Archdeacon Brian Smith said: "We can seat six hundred people at St George's and there is also standing room for another one hundred- we are planning for a full church."

He added: "People from all over the island community wish to pay their respects and I am led to believe there may be some high-profile guests."

Various people are believed to be speaking at the funeral including a member of the family and Sir Norman's agent, who will talk about his professional life.

Mourners will be able to pay tribute to the comedian as the cortege will drive along Douglas Promenade starting at its Onchan end at 1335 before the funeral at 1400.

A spokesman for Sir Norman's family said there was an open invitation to islanders to attend the service at the church as well as the reception at Sir Norman's Bar in the Sefton Hotel, Douglas.

A spokesman from the Isle of Man police said: " People are asked to avoid the area of St Georges Church in vehicles and there will be traffic wardens on duty to ease congestion.

"If people can plan ahead and use other forms of transport available such as the bus this should ease congestion and allow the funeral to take place with the dignity and respect that this occasion deserves".

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