Professor Stephen Hawking’s funeral to be held in Cambridge

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The family of Professor Stephen Hawking, who died last week aged 76, have announced that his funeral will be held in Cambridge on Easter Saturday.

The service will take place at Great St Mary’s, located opposite Gonville and Caius College, where Professor Hawking was a Fellow for over 50 years.

In a statement released by his children, Lucy, Robert and Tim, the decision to hold the funeral service in Cambridge was due to the late Professor’s love for the city, which also loved him.

The private service, open to friends, family and colleagues, will be held at 2pm and is to be followed by a private reception at Trinity College. In recognition of the effect of Hawking’s work on people with and without religious beliefs, the service will be “both inclusive and traditional, reflecting the breadth and diversity of his life.”

The statement released by his children also drew attention to the “huge gratitude” for all the “wonderful” tributes to their father in the past few days. “Our father lived and worked in Cambridge for over 50 years. He was an integral and highly recognisable part of the university and the city.”

Thousands have visited Gonville and Caius College to pay their respects to the scientist, where a book of condolence has been open since last Wednesday. Thousands more have signed the College’s online book of condolence, filled with heartfelt messages of thanks.

Diagnosed with motor neurone disease at the age of 21, Hawking was best known amongst his friends and colleagues for his sense of humour, frequently driving wildly along the streets of Cambridge in his wheelchair or taking it for a spin on the dancefloor at college parties. Though initially given only two years to live, he defied doctors’ predictions to live well into his seventies, becoming a prolific scientist and published author.

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