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Donald Dewar Wednesday, 18 October, 2000, 18:26 GMT 19:26 UK
A nation says goodbye
Red rose on coffin
A sign of Labour's past atop the coffin
Scotland has said a final farewell to its late First Minister Donald Dewar, whose funeral has taken place in Glasgow.

Security was tight around Glasgow Cathedral where royalty and politicians attended the service.

Thousands of people lined the streets of the city to pay their last respects to Mr Dewar, who died a week ago from a brain haemorrhage at the age of 63.

People from his Anniesland constituency sat side by side with major political figures at his funeral in the cathedral. About 1,300 invited guests were present.

Among the warm tributes to his political and personal life paid at the service was one from broadcaster and friend Ruth Wishart, who said: "He was a great Scot and a very fine human being."

After the 40-minute service, beginning at 1430BST, thousands more said goodbye as the cortege made its journey through Mr Dewar's native city.

He enriched the lives of many

Sheriff Principal Edward Bowen QC
The procession passed through parts of Glasgow loved by the first minister - such as the university area and his west end constituency.

Among the floral tributes outside the cathedral was one from Conservative MSP James Douglas-Hamilton and his wife, which read: "With love for 40 years' good friendship."

Another, from the University of Glasgow, where Mr Dewar studied law, described him as "irreplaceable" in the student union.

"His contribution as a friend of the building will never be forgotten," it said.

The Prince of Wales, whose official Scottish title is the Duke of Rothesay, represented the Queen at the funeral, the theme of which was social justice.

Pall-bearers carry the coffin from the cathedral
Pall-bearers carry the coffin from the cathedral
All but two of the British cabinet were present along with the entire Scottish Executive, and at least five former Scottish Secretaries of State, from Sir Michael Forsyth back to Bruce Millan.

The service was led by the Reverend Douglas Alexander, a life long friend, who paid tribute to Mr Dewar's "rich humanity and public service".

Prime Minister Tony Blair, read from the Old Testament.

The main eulogy was given by Chancellor Gordon Brown, who raised muted laughter with an anecdote from his friend's life.

"Though he has gone from us, let his cause endure," Mr Brown said.

The first minister's spokesman and friend David Whitton also took part in the service.

Family theme

In keeping with the family theme, there was no special area set aside for VIPs, who took their seats beside the other invited guests.

The Labour Party received 500 tickets, with 200 given to people from Mr Dewar's constituency.

Other guests included his driver, two canteen workers and a cleaner from the Scottish Executive's office in Edinburgh.

Sunrise in Glasgow on a sombre day
Sunrise in Glasgow on a sombre day
The pall-bearers were selected from the fire, ambulance and police services.

Business at Glasgow Sheriff Court stopped on Wednesday for a minute's silence.

Sheriffs, lawyers, court workers and members of the press joined together in court number eight to mark the passing of Mr Dewar.

Sheriff Principal Edward Bowen QC said the minute's silence was improvised because there was no set procedure in Scottish courts on how to mark the death of a government minister.

Sheriff Bowen added that staff felt compelled to remember Mr Dewar because of his "close links" to the Glasgow legal community.

"He enriched the lives of many," he added.

Politicians in attendance

Members of the Scottish cabinet arrived at 1310 led by Acting First Minister Jim Wallace, who was accompanied by David Trimble, the First Minister of Northern Ireland.

Communities Minister Wendy Alexander walked along the precinct to the cathedral alongside leadership front-runner Henry McLeish and other Scottish ministers.

SNP leader John Swinney was accompanied by some of his party's MSPs and was followed by Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy.

Joining Mr Kennedy was Menzies Campbell, Mr Dewar's university friend, and the Lib Dems' foreign affairs spokesman, who walked beside former Tory minister and Tory MSP for the Lothians region, Lord James Douglas-Hamilton, another of Mr Dewar's lifelong friends.

Others to arrive included Tony Blair's press secretary Alastair Campbell, former Labour leader Neil Kinnock, Scottish Secretary Dr John Reid, MSP Margo McDonald, Cardinal Winning, leader of the Catholic Church in Scotland, and the Bishop of Edinburgh, Richard Holloway.

Many members of the Westminster cabinet were present including the chancellor and his wife Sarah, Home Secretary Jack Straw, Social Security Alastair Darling, Education Secretary David Blunkett, Culture Secretary Chris Smith and Cabinet Office Minister Mo Mowlam.

Also present were Mr Dewar's official spokesman David Whitton, the Trade Minister Helen Liddell, Labour MP Tam Dalyell and High Court judge and former Lord Advocate Lord Hardie.

Trade unionists included Jamie Webster, the convener at the Govan shipyards and TUC general secretary John Monks.

Also among the mourners were the Rt Rev Andrew McLellan, moderator of the general assembly of the Church of Scotland, who read one of the prayers, Sir David Steel, Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament.

Nato Secretary General Lord Robertson and Douglas Alexander, MP for Paisley South and the son of Mr Dewar's close friend the Rev Douglas Alexander were also there.

The BBC's Andrew Marr
"This almost felt like a state funeral"
BBC Scotland political editor Brian Taylor
"Chancellor Gordon Brown praised his friend as the founder of Scotland's parliament"
Tributes to Donald Dewar
"Endlessly charismatic but always modest, a constant friend"
Click on the stories to find out more

Key stories

The tributes

Filling the void


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