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Derek Draper: Elton John and Tony Blair attend funeral service

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By Noor Nanji

Culture correspondent

Sir Elton John and Sir Tony Blair are among the stars and politicians attending the funeral of Derek Draper, the author and former political adviser who died last month.

Draper’s wife, TV presenter Kate Garraway, and their children were also in attendance at the private service.

Draper had been living with extreme complications from Covid since contracting the disease in March 2020.

He suffered a cardiac arrest in December and died in early January.

At the time, Garraway paid tribute to her “darling husband Derek” in a statement posted on Instagram.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and Alastair Campbell, former Labour spin doctor, were also seen arriving at the church in North London.

They were joined by the singer Myleene Klass and broadcasters Susanna Reid and Richard Madeley.

Draper, who was from Chorley in Lancashire, was a Labour Party lobbyist for almost a decade.

He left politics in 1998 after being involved in the “Lobbygate” scandal in which he was caught on record boasting of his ability to sell access to government ministers.

He retrained as a psychotherapist and wrote regularly in magazines and newspapers on psychotherapy issues. He is the author of two books, Blair’s 100 Days and Life Support.

In 2009 he founded the LabourList website, a news website supportive, but independent of, the Labour Party.

After Draper died, Sir Tony was among those paying tribute to him, describing him as a “good colleague and great friend”.

SOURCE: BBC NEWS