Sir Cliff Richard and Gloria Estefan lead tributes to Liverpool legend Gerry Marsden

Video report by ITV Granada Reports journalist Andy Bonner.

Sir Cliff Richard has led tributes to Gerry Marsden as friends and family remember the life of the Liverpool singer.

The Toxteth-born frontman of Gerry and the Pacemakers passed away on 3 January, 2021 at 78, after being diagnosed with a blood infection in his heart.

When he died, his home city could not say their goodbyes properly because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Now all restrictions have been lifted, Gerry’s family reserved several hundred tickets so the public could attend a memorial service at Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral.

The sun shone for the singer as family, friends and fans arrived in their droves to pay respects to a legend of the city.

Sir Cliff Richard, who spoke of his "gratitude" of having met Gerry, led the tributes.

He said: "So sad that we lose people far too soon.

"We will miss him greatly. He was a great singer, a great entertainer, a great husband."

American musician Gloria Estefan fondly remembered the first time she heard Ferry Cross the Mersey as a young girl and the first time she met Gerry when she was on tour in Liverpool.

Whilst Gerry was affectionately celebrated by musical greats, it was his impact in his beloved Liverpool that was warmly remembered.

Hillsborough justice campaigner Jenni Hicks, whose teenage daughters Vicki and Sarah were killed in the disaster, recalls how Gerry came off tour to sing You'll Never Walk Alone at the 20th anniversary memorial.

Granada Reports presenter Lucy Meacock said Gerry's smile "lit up the North West for so long" and said that he was a champion for Liverpool.

Only a small funeral was possible due to the coronavirus pandemic, leaving his fans unable to pay their respects and celebrate his life.

Also among the celebs who attended memorial service was Take That's Gary Barlow who said singing with Gerry was a moment he will remember forever.

Metro Mayor for the Liverpool city region Steve Rotheram broke down as he revealed some of Gerry's ashes have been scattered on the Mersey.

He said he was right when Gerry said "here I'll stay."

Gerry and the Pacemakers were the first act to reach number one in the UK Singles Chart with their first three singles.

The third single was their cover version of You'll Never Walk Alone, which became Liverpool FC's anthem.

Gerry Marsden was given an MBE in 2003. Credit: PA images

The band starred in the 1965 musical ‘Ferry Cross the Mersey’, before splitting up 1967 but came back together in the 1970s spanning nearly 50 years until 2018, when Gerry retired.

The Mersey Ferry terminal at Pier Head was renamed the Liverpool Gerry Marsden Ferry Terminal in January.

Gerry was awarded an MBE in 2003 for supporting the victims of the Hillsborough disaster and he was also received Liverpool’s Freedom of the City in 2009.

The singer released a new version of 'You'll Never Walk Alone' in 2020, paying tribute to the efforts of the NHS during the covid pandemic.