Final farewells for Rotherham shopkeeper

In excess of two thousand people attend the funeral of  Parvaiz Iqbal on Sunday.  Parvaiz was killed in a machete attack at his Halal Butchers Shop in Grovesnor Street Eastwood Rotherham.'27 October 2013'Image � Paul David Drabble'www.pauldaviddrabble.co.uk
In excess of two thousand people attend the funeral of Parvaiz Iqbal on Sunday. Parvaiz was killed in a machete attack at his Halal Butchers Shop in Grovesnor Street Eastwood Rotherham.'27 October 2013'Image � Paul David Drabble'www.pauldaviddrabble.co.uk
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Thousands of mourners bowed their heads in prayer as a Rotherham community lined the streets to pay its last respects to an adored family man.

Poignant scenes played out as relatives and friends gathered in and around tennis courts in Eastwood, Rotherham, for a public funeral service.

They were paying tribute to dad-of-three Parvaiz Iqbal, aged 40, who was stabbed to death at his butcher’s shop in Grosvenor Road on October 15.

Mourners gathered in and around the mosque on Russell street, Eastwood, for prayers before the main service at the tennis courts.

Mr Iqbal’s family had organised for the service to take place outdoors because of the remarkable turnout, which saw people travelling from as far as London to pay their respects.

Prayers echoed from a loudspeaker system and floral tributes spelling out the words ‘Dad’, ‘Papa’ and ‘Son’ accompanied the coffin which was draped in a green patterned blanket.

Shahid Shad, aged 27, a neighbour and close family friend said he spoke to Parvaiz days before the tragedy.

He said: “On the Sunday before his death I went into the shop and was joking with him about our boys playing football.”

Mr Iqbal’s coffin lay under a small marquee at the tennis courts so mourners could say their goodbyes.

The father-of-three was remembered by all in Eastwood, stretching beyond the realms of his religious community.

John Brittle, aged 31, who has lived in Eastwood all his life said his partner had visited the shop just two hours before Parvaiz was killed.

John watched from the small park nearby with his partner and three children.

He said: “Parvais always had a smile on his face, always laughing and joking. 
“There will be a star in the sky for him.”

His daughter, Olivia, nine, said: “He was a very nice guy and all of his friends will miss him a lot.”

Naeem Mahmood, aged 27, of Herringthorpe Valley Road, Rotherham, has been charged with his murder and remains in custody.