Stephen Hawking funeral takes place in Cambridge

Stephen Hawking's funeral procession

Friends and family were all in attendance, including actor Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar for playing Hawking in 2014's The Theory of Everything. Astronomer Royal Martin Rees, read from Plato's Apology 40, "The Death of Socrates", which talks of the search for knowledge persisting after death.

Scores of mourners, including Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones, on Saturday lined the streets of the British city of Cambridge for the funeral of theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking.

Music at the funeral included performances by Caius College Choir, and Beyond the Night Sky, a work specially written by Caian composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad to celebrate Hawking's seventy-fifth birthday previous year.

Hawking will be cremated at a later date and his ashes are to be interred at London's Westminster Abbey near the remains of fellow scientist Isaac Newton. Two bouquets of flowers were placed on the casket, one of white lilies to symbolize the universe, and one of white roses, which represented the polar star.

"He has had a major rethinking influence in the way people think about science and the wider world we live in".

Professor Hawking visited this region many times over the years: the most recent of these was in October 2016 when he gave an inspiring talk to Headway Suffolk's Neuro Conference at BT Adastral Park and then Kesgrave Community Centre.

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"He was very humble, very modest, but his thinking is far, far ahead". He sees 100 years in the future. Created by composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad, it is inspired by a children's poem, "Universe", by the American poet Steven Schnur, and includes quotes from Hawking's famous book A Brief History of Time.

"We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today".

"But what he contributed will last so much longer".

The scientist, confined for decades to a wheelchair and voice synthesizer because of the disease ALS, was known for his charisma, curiosity, and a crackling sense of humour. He earned worldwide notoriety for his writings about space and time.

He achieved worldwide renown after the publication of A Brief History of Time in 1988.

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