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Memorial service planned for four children who died in Stafford house fire

Horsedrawn carriages carried the coffins of the four children, ahead of a private funeral service on Monday

An event to celebrate the lives of four children who died in a house fire in Stafford will be held later this month.

Riley Holt, aged eight, Keegan Unitt, aged six, Tilly Rose Unitt, aged four, and Olly Unitt, aged three, died following the blaze at their home on Sycamore Lane in Highfields on 5 February.

A private funeral for family and close friends took place at Stafford crematorium on Monday (11 March).

Members of the public are invited to a memorial service at St Mary’s Church in Stafford town centre at 6:30pm on Thursday 28 March.

They are encouraged to wear bright-coloured clothes and bring a teddy bear.

The hour-long service will feature tributes to the children from their school teachers and singing and prayers by pupils at their schools, Marshlands Primary and Castlechurch Primary.

There will also be solo songs from local singers Leanne Ewins and Neil Mason and congregational music led by musicians from Rising Brook Community Church.

The Revd Philip Sowerbutts, Vicar of Castle Church in Highfields, will speak at the service.

He said: “This is an opportunity for everyone who knew Riley, Keegan, Tilly Rose and Olly to come together and celebrate their lives and all that they meant to those who knew and loved them. The Highfields community has been devastated by their loss but we want to remember
the children in a hopeful and life-affirming way.”

The Preb Richard Grigson, Rector of Stafford, said: “The Saint Marys Church has served the people of Stafford for over a thousand years as a place of praise and prayer. On 28 March we open the doors to welcome all those who will come to celebrate the lives of Riley, Keegan, Tilly Rose and Olly, to support those affected by their tragic death, and to pray for the healing of the community of Highfields.”

People will be able to make donations in the children’s memories for the Ambulance Staff Charity, the Fire Fighters Charity and Staffordshire Police, and prayers will be said for the emergency services who attended the fire.

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