Paddington creator Michael Bond honored at cathedral service

Michael Bond's granddaughter India Jankel gives a reading during a memorial service for Michael Bond, the author of the Paddington Bear stories, at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Tuesday Nov. 14, 2017. Bond died in June 2017, aged 91, following a short illness. (Dominic Lipinski/PA via AP)

LONDON (AP) — British actor Hugh Bonneville has joined hundreds of mourners at a memorial service for the creator of the marmalade-loving bear Paddington.

Bonneville, who plays adoptive father Mr. Brown in the “Paddington” films, told mourners at London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral that Michael Bond “was as kindly, dignified, charming and lovable as the immortal Paddington Bear he gave us.”

Bond wrote some 20 Paddington books before his death in June at age 91.

At Tuesday’s service, Bonneville read tributes from fans alongside young actors Madeleine Harris and Samuel Joslin, who play his children in the two “Paddington” movies.

The congregation included Bond’s family, friends from the publishing world and celebrities such as writer-comedian Stephen Fry.

Fry said Bond often asked himself, “‘What would Paddington do?’ I think that would be a good tattoo for all of us.”