Six horse drawn carriages at funeral of children killed in Derby house fire
THE funeral of six children killed in a house fire in Derby took place today, with mourners packing the church and crowds gathering outside.
Jade Philpott, 10, and brothers Duwayne, 13, John, nine, Jack, eight, Jessie, six and Jayden, five, were carried from near their home in the city’s Allenton suburb across Derby in individual horse-drawn carriages.
Crowds gathered outside St Mary’s Catholic Church in the city centre, whilst inside the 350-seater church was packed to capacity.
Members of the family wore rosettes with six petals, one for each child, blue for the five boys and pink for Jade, whilst mourners threw yellow roses onto the coffins as they were carried into the church.
Each bore the name of the child along with a motif including a Disney princess for Jade and the Derby County crest for Duwayne.
Their parents, Mick, 55, and Mairead, 31, Philpott, who have been charged with their murder, were not given leave by the prison service to attend.
The service included a full Requiem Mass and was due to be followed by a private burial in Chaddensen.
With feelings running high in the city, prior to the funeral Derbyshire police’s Assistant Chief Constable Steve Cotterill urged mourners to show respect and restraint.
He said: "The funeral will be an understandably difficult and emotional time and I would particularly ask that anyone attending, respects the privacy of the family and the mourners.
"Understandably with the six horse-drawn hearses, the funeral cortege will take time to travel," he said.
Locals have raised £14,000 to pay for the funeral and burials.
The trial of Mr and Mrs Philpott is scheduled to start in January.