Moving moments and touching tributes as hundreds of family and friends attend Ben Ashworth's celebration service

Hundreds of inspirational runner Ben Ashworth's friends and family packed into a Lancashire cathedral to pay tribute to the husband and dad.

Saturday, 15th July 2017, 10:18 pm
Updated Tuesday, 18th July 2017, 8:46 am
Ben Ashworth's wife Louise with their three children

There was only standing room in Blackburn Cathedral tonight as they celebrated "inspiration" and "legend" Ben.

The celebration service, organised by the 38-year-old's wife Louise and three girls, was full of tears, laughter and love as those close to him took to the stage to share their memories of the fundraising runner.

The proud Prestonian, from Broadgate, died on July 2 after a five-year battle with bowel cancer but not before raising thousands of pounds for charity as well as raising awareness of the disease.

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Preston's Red Rose running club of which Ben Ashworth was a part of.

"This is the story of how a musical theatre student and Librarian came together," Louise said. "He wanted to make the most of the gift he had been given.

"He did what he set out to achieve. He made memories for me and the children to look back on.

"He was my husband and sometimes I was jealous because I didn't want to share him with you all.

"But he had enough love to go around."

Hundreds gathered in Blackburn Cathedral for Ben Ashworth's celebration service

Others to speak included Ben's dad, brother and mum as well as his former colleagues, his friends and his doctor.

These speeches were supported by television screens showing pictures of Ben's life while the Bishop of Blackburn Julian Henderson read Ben's 'cancer adventure' written by Ben himself.

The hundreds present joined in with hymns and songs before the service ended with one big selfie on Ben's phone.

"We were so lucky to have all that time together," Louise said. "He was always so kind and gentle and his legacy will live on."

Preston's Red Rose running club of which Ben Ashworth was a part of.
Hundreds gathered in Blackburn Cathedral for Ben Ashworth's celebration service