BBC Radio 4

    Sir Clement Freud's funeral

    It was Sir Clement Freud's funeral today (Friday) at St Bride's, Fleet Street in London. It was billed as being both a funeral and a celebration - and so it was. It was poignant and beautiful and peppered with references to Radio 4. One of the pieces of music chosen was 'Oh What a Beautiful Morning' from Oklahoma - a Clement Freud choice when he was on Desert Island Discs in 1967.

    And the coffin was carried out of the church to the sound of 'The Minute Waltz' - the theme tune (of course) of Just a Minute (JAM). Various people used the key Just a Minute phrase - no hesitation, deviation or repetition - and one of his youngest grandchildren (he had 17) read out a string of words he liked to use on JAM - including ubiquitous and parallelogram... but ended up quoting his grandfather's favourite set of words. "And the winner is Clement Freud."

    It was a vivid reminder of how the great Radio 4 programmes run deep in national life - and humbling.


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