Devastated family of Sir David Amess visit sea of tributes at church where he was killed

18 October 2021, 11:44 | Updated: 18 October 2021, 12:58

The family visited the scene on Monday
The family visited the scene on Monday. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

The family of Sir David Amess have visited the church in Leigh-on-Sea where the Conservative MP was stabbed to death.

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Family members including Sir David's widow Julia and his daughters took in tributes left at Belfairs Methodist Church, where the father of five was stabbed to death at a constituency surgery on Friday.

Flowers, cards and even a wreath have been left at the scene over the weekend.

The minister of Belfairs Methodist Church, Rev Clifford Newman, spoke with Sir David's widow during the family visit to the church.

The six visitors bowed their heads and formed a semi-circle around the churchman as he gave a short private address.

Floral tributes were piled up at either side of the door to Belfairs Methodist Church, with at least five uniformed police officers standing inside the building and a marked car in the road outside.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is among those to have left tributes, joined by Sir Keir Starmer, Sir Lindsay Hoyle and Priti Patel.

Read more: Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer leave flowers to Sir David Amess after 'terror incident'

Sir David's wife Julia was one of those to visit the scene
Sir David's wife Julia was one of those to visit the scene. Picture: Alamy
The family were comforted by the Rev Clifford Newman
The family were comforted by the Rev Clifford Newman. Picture: Alamy

Sir David, 69, was stabbed multiple times whilst holding a surgery at the church on Friday.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the family said: "Our hearts are shattered."

They added: "We have realised from tributes paid that there was far, far more to David than even we, those closest to him, knew.

"We are enormously proud of him."

The family stayed for around 15 minutes
The family stayed for around 15 minutes. Picture: Alamy

They urged people to "set aside hatred" in his honour, saying: "Whatever one’s race, religious or political beliefs, be tolerant and try to understand.

"As a family, we are trying to understand why this awful thing has occurred.

"Nobody should die in that way. Nobody. Please let some good come from this tragedy.

"We are absolutely broken, but we will survive and carry on for the sake of a wonderful and inspiring man."

Sir David was stabbed multiple times during a meeting with his constituents in Essex on Friday.

A 25-year-old man is being held under the Terrorism Act on suspicion of the 69-year-old's murder.

In the statement, the family said they found "comfort" in the "wonderful, wonderful tributes paid to David".

"The support shown by friends, constituents and the general public alike has been so overwhelming," they said.

"As a family it has given us strength."