This Is Local LondonAbbey tributes to Sir David Frost (From This Is Local London)

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Abbey tributes to Sir David Frost

This Is Local London: The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrive to attend a service to celebrate the life of Sir David Frost at Westminster Abbey, London. The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrive to attend a service to celebrate the life of Sir David Frost at Westminster Abbey, London.

The Prince of Wales was among more than 2,000 people paying tribute to late broadcaster Sir David Frost at a service in Westminster Abbey.

They were being joined by famous faces fr om the worlds of politics and showbusiness including Sir Michael Parkinson, Lord Owen and Joanna Lumley.

Other royal guests invited to the memorial service included the Countess of Wessex, the Duke of York and his daughter Princess Beatrice.

Charles was joined by Sir David's wid ow, Lady Carina Fitzalan-Howard, to lay flo wers on a memorial stone dedicated to the broadcaster who died last August aged 74.

Among the great and the good who spoke to honour him were the BBC's director-general Lord Hall and Sir Michael who delivered readings.

Dean of Westminster t he Very Rev Dr John Hall said Sir David was " amongst our greatest communicators".

He said: " Surely it was the warmth of his humanity, his interest in people, and what made them tick, that made his 'Hello, good evening and welcome' welcome in the world's living rooms."

Two of Sir David's sons were delivering poems during the service and hymns included He Who Would Valiant Be and Jerusalem.

Ronnie Corbett, who worked with Sir David in the 1960s satire boom that launched both their careers, was a mong those reading prayers during the service.

The service reflected the thread of humour and satire which ran through his career with a comic tribute from Lumley called A Sonnet Of Sorts For A Star, which she co-wrote with musician Sir Richard Stilgoe.

It began: "Shall I compare thee to Sir Robin Day? Thou wert more lovely and more temperate. Earth has not anything to show more fair, Hello, good evening, welcome, Frosty's there."

The humorous tribute included the lines: " No more TV-am, no Al Jazeera - We end not a career, but end an era; For now he's gone, ascended into orbit, And 'I look up to him' (quoth Ronnie Corbett)." It concluded with the line: " When Frost has gone, can spring be far behind?"

Known for his incisive interviews - above all, with disgraced US president Richard Nixon - Sir David spent more than 50 years as a television star.

His award-winning interview style was considered non-aggressive, affable and effusive - but he had a talent for extracting intriguing information and revealing reactions from his subjects.

During his series of five interviews with Nixon in 1977, the slippery former president known as "Tricky Dicky" dramatically admitted that he had "let down the country".

The encounter later formed the basis of the play Frost/Nixon, which was made into a hit film with Michael Sheen playing Sir David.

The memorial was a star studded affair, attended by Pippa Middleton, Rowan Atkinson, Michael Caine and Sienna Miller.

Among those who came to pay tribute were funnyman David Walliams and his wife, model Lara Stone, as well as Julian Fellowes, Terry Wogan, Claudia Winkleman, Sue Lawley, Esther Rantzen, Stephen Fry, Anne Robinson, John Sergeant and Angus Deayton from the world of television.

Winkleman said that the service had been "beautiful", while Lawley said afterwards: "It was completely right, perfect. He was remembered as a legend."

Sergeant said: "It was like the last of the great Frost parties. It was perfect for him, absolutely perfect."

Guests from the political sphere included Cherie Blair and Sarah Brown.

Charles was joined by the Duchess of Cornwall at the service, while the Duchess Of York also attended.

The service included a montage of highlights from Frost's famous broadcasting career.

Former BBC director-general Greg Dyke gave the address and, as well as paying tribute to Sir David's talents and how he made "television history", joked about his "shortcomings".

Sir David never mastered technology, even "old technology", he said, recounting how when they walked past a cash machine and "I said 'hang on a minute, I need to get some money', he looked at me in awe. He'd never used a cash machine in his whole life".

Sir David, despite changing the face of television, also used to get his sons to help him tune in the TV to the football match he wanted to watch, he said.

He drew laughter when he said that when Carina, before she became his wife, was asked after she first met Sir David whether he was a religious man, she replied: "Oh yes, he's very religious. He thinks he's God."

He added: "He was a self-confessed workaholic but also he was David the friend, David the father and David, Carina's husband."

He joked that the service, which ended with bells ringing, looked "remarkably like one of David's summer parties but without the alcohol".

Paying tribute to his talents, he said that the late broadcaster was "unique" adding: "There will never be another David Frost, dominating the television industry in the way he did."

But he said that despite changing not just television but "Britain forever", Sir David wanted to be remembered as a "family man...father...and caring, funny and generous friend".

Mr Dyke joked that while Sir David did not touch alcohol for the first 18 years of his life, he "made up for it after that".

He said that when broadcasters initially failed to recognise his talents it was the "television equivalent of Decca turning down the Beatles".

Early on in the service, guests watched a montage of Sir David's broadcasting career, including his famous Nixon interviews and Tony Blair's surprised reaction when he asked him if he and George Bush pray together.

The memorial stone read "1939 Sir David Frost OBE, Broadcaster, 2013".

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