Procession of 42 Minis line Northampton streets to say farewell to fundraiser

Debs James.
Debs James.

Dozens of colourful Minis joined a funeral cortege for a much-loved Northampton woman who lost her life to bowel cancer.

Mini-lover and owner, Deborah James - affectionately known as 'Debs' - passed away on July 27 at Cynthia Spencer Hospice.

Strangers took to the streets to pay farewell to Mini-lover, 'Debs'.

Strangers took to the streets to pay farewell to Mini-lover, 'Debs'.

For the 37-year-olds last wish, Deborah of St Crispins, asked for a Mini convoy to follow the hearse to Towcester Road cemetery.

Her brother, Derek Rusling, led the 42 cars while driving Deborah's own Mini and described the send off for the mum-of-one as "amazing."

"She put it in her will that she wanted a convoy of Minis at her funeral," he said.

"We thought we would get half a dozen cars, we put it on social media and it just went mad - we were over whelmed, most of those people we didn't know, it's really humbling.

Drivers printed out 'Debs convoy' signs for the journey.

Drivers printed out 'Debs convoy' signs for the journey.

"It was an amazing day, we were equally as joyful as we were sorrowful."

As a result of her cancer diagnosis, Deborah started up her own HR business specialised in running workshops teaching employers how to treat staff with cancer in the workplace.

She often fundraised for Bowel Cancer UK, raising awareness for their 'Never Too Young' campaign and took part in the Race For Life in 2016 where she gave a speech to an audience in Abington Park about her two-year on-and-off battle with the illness.

The family would like to thank Wollaston BMW, Northamptonshire Police and Northampton Town Football Club for their support on the day.