Celebrities pay heartfelt tribute to ‘national treasure’ Sir Terry Wogan

It was the 50th anniversary of his first radio broadcast

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Celebrities from the world television and radio have paid tribute to the late Sir Terry Wogan in a heartfelt memorial service.

Claudia Winkleman, Dermot O’Leary and Fearne Cotton were among the stars arriving at Westminster Abbey for a special service of thanksgiving to honour the life of the much-loved broadcasting star.

Sir Terry, known for his velvety voice on radio and television, gave enjoyment to audiences over six decades, sealing his status as a national treasure.

Today a host of stars poured into Westminster Abbey to pay tribute to Sir Terry, who died at the age of 77 on January 31 this year following a battle with cancer.

Broadcaster Gloria Hunniford, who was among the celebrity guests, said: “It’s a very special event. I feel happy and sad.

“Sad because we have to be here to celebrate his life, happy that we’ve got a chance to say goodbye.

“He would be saying, ‘what’s this all about?’ But we never got a chance to say goodbye.”

The service featured performances from Katie Melua, 32, and Peter Gabriel, 66.

There were also tributes from the BBC’s director-general Tony Hall and DJ Chris Evans, who replaced Sir Terry in 2009 after 27 years on his Radio Two breakfast show.

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Comic Jimmy Carr also paid tribute, saying: “With Terry Wogan there was no act. He was entirely authentic. He was himself on stage and off. ”

Eamonn Holmes said Sir Terry was “from a time in broadcasting that will not be repeated again”.

Eamonn’s wife and fellow This Morning presenter Ruth Langsford said she would always recall the DJ and TV host as a family man.

She explained that he did not have showbiz photos around his home because “his joy was his family”.

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Jo Whiley said: “He was one of a kind. He was the one who taught us broadcasters how to be broadcasters. And he was such a fine example of a man.”

Nancy Brown
Associate Editor