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PCSO Julia James: Hundreds line streets ahead of funeral PCSO Julia James: Tributes paid as hundreds gather for funeral
(32 minutes later)
Julia James was a serving PCSO with Kent PoliceJulia James was a serving PCSO with Kent Police
Hundreds of people have lined the streets ahead of the funeral of a police community support officer who was killed while walking near her home.Hundreds of people have lined the streets ahead of the funeral of a police community support officer who was killed while walking near her home.
Julia James, 53, was found dead in woodland near Dover, Kent, in April, triggering a large police investigation.Julia James, 53, was found dead in woodland near Dover, Kent, in April, triggering a large police investigation.
People lined the streets in nearby Aylesham as her funeral cortege made its way to Canterbury Cathedral.People lined the streets in nearby Aylesham as her funeral cortege made its way to Canterbury Cathedral.
A private service got under way at 12:00 BST.A private service got under way at 12:00 BST.
Ms James's police hat had been placed on top of her coffin before it was carried into the cathedral.
Fr Jeff Cridland, who was conducting the service, said Ms James had been "one of the flowers of Aylesham".
"Our job this morning is to be proud of Julia," he added. "Sad to be sending her now, but proud of her and loving her to the depth of our being."
Officers gathered outside Canterbury police stationOfficers gathered outside Canterbury police station
Temporary Det Supt Gavin Moss said Ms James was a "truly caring, wonderful public servant and person" who "always showed Kent Police in its finest light".
"Her passion, dedication and commitment, along with her friendly, bubbly personality that defined her, was evident from day one and right through her career," he told the service.
Flags were flown at half-mast in her memory at public buildings in Kent, including council offices and police stations.Flags were flown at half-mast in her memory at public buildings in Kent, including council offices and police stations.
Meanwhile, police officers performed a guard of honour as the hearse passed Canterbury police station.Meanwhile, police officers performed a guard of honour as the hearse passed Canterbury police station.
Earlier, Ms James's daughter Bethan Coles said it "would be lovely to see the community come together once more".Earlier, Ms James's daughter Bethan Coles said it "would be lovely to see the community come together once more".
"If you wish to gather in the Market Square or line the streets for a final farewell please do so," she wrote on Facebook."If you wish to gather in the Market Square or line the streets for a final farewell please do so," she wrote on Facebook.
East Kent commander Chf Supt Nigel Brookes salutes as Ms James's coffin passes in AyleshamEast Kent commander Chf Supt Nigel Brookes salutes as Ms James's coffin passes in Aylesham
Hundreds of people have lined the route of the funeral cortege
Donna Monger, one of those who joined mourners in Aylesham, said: "It's so sad, she was such a lovely girl.Donna Monger, one of those who joined mourners in Aylesham, said: "It's so sad, she was such a lovely girl.
"We just wanted to pay our respect and it's nice that all the village have come together.""We just wanted to pay our respect and it's nice that all the village have come together."
David Devine said he had come to pay his respects to a "very nice lady, [who] took care of the community". David Prime said he had come to pay his respects to a "very nice lady, [who] took care of the community".
"I'm very sad to see her go, [I'm] a bit choked up.""I'm very sad to see her go, [I'm] a bit choked up."
Hundreds of people have lined the route of the funeral cortege
Ms James, who had worked for Kent Police since 2008, died from serious head injuries. Her Jack Russell dog Toby was found unharmed at her side.Ms James, who had worked for Kent Police since 2008, died from serious head injuries. Her Jack Russell dog Toby was found unharmed at her side.
Large numbers of police officers spent hours combing fields in the local area and appealing for witnesses.Large numbers of police officers spent hours combing fields in the local area and appealing for witnesses.
Detectives also created a reconstruction of Ms James's last known movements, featuring her dog Toby and an actress wearing identical clothing.Detectives also created a reconstruction of Ms James's last known movements, featuring her dog Toby and an actress wearing identical clothing.
A flag was flown at half-mast in Ashford, where Ms James served for several yearsA flag was flown at half-mast in Ashford, where Ms James served for several years
Callum Wheeler, 21, from Aylesham, has been charged with Ms James's murder. He will face trial on 29 November.Callum Wheeler, 21, from Aylesham, has been charged with Ms James's murder. He will face trial on 29 November.
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