Helena Bonham Carter and footballer Tony Adams attend today’s funeral of Nell Gifford at Gloucester Cathedral

Hundreds of people turned out at Gloucester Cathedral this afternoon for the funeral of Nell Gifford.

Celebrities including actress Helena Bonham Carter and former footballer Tony Adams were in attendance to pay their respects to the co-founder of Giffords Circus.

Artist and mum-of-two Nell made her name in 2000 when she satisfied her long-held dream of running off to join the circus – by forming her own.

She passed away last month aged 46 following a long battle with breast cancer.

Her death brough an outpouring of grief from all those who knew her – including her friend of 14 years, Helena Bonham Carter.

Paying tribute to the circus performer last month, Helena, 53, said: “She was a true warrior, a poet, a magician.

“She was a living legend… she squeezed every drop from life and now we must do so for her sake.”

Bonham Carter was among a host of familiar faces, including former England footballer Tony Adams, and Countryfile presenter Ellie Harrison, who turned up to celebrate Nell’s life at her funeral today

The funeral was intended to be “a celebration of Nell’s amazing life with all who her her in their hearts”.

Speaking in December, a spokesman for the circus said: “It is with broken hearts that we announce the death of Nell Gifford – the co-founder, driving force and the visionary behind Giffords Circus.

“Her illness was well documented in the press, as she believed in transparency and openness.

“Nell was surrounded by family, both immediate and circus – left us on Sunday December 8.

“We know many tears will be falling as Nell touched so many hearts. Her vision for Giffords Circus was to bring happiness, imagination and enliven people’s souls.

“Giffords Circus shall continue to do just that. Whilst the world is a dimmer place today, Nell will continue to live through the circus.”

Nell’s beloved circus will carry on in her name, with tickets for this year’s show, The Hooley, already on sale.

She is survived by her twins Cecil and Red and the wider Gifford family.

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