A COMMUNITY came to a standstill as final respects were paid to a GP who had served them for nearly 20 years before succumbing to coronavirus.

Hundreds lined the streets of Holcome Brook as a funeral cortege wound its way to the Garden City medical practice, where Dr Saad Al-Dubbaisi worked.

Centre staff placed roses and sweetwilliams on his coffin after the his hearse pulled off Longsight Road.

Floral tributes also surrounded on oak tree outside the medical centre.

Dr Jeff Schryer, chairman of Bury Clinical Commissioning Group and a number of senior medics were also in attendance, as a cortege stopped off there en-route to his funeral in Chorlton.

Earlier the cortege had also passed the Moorgate Primary Care Centre, in Bury town centre, where friends and colleagues paid similar tributes.

The Iraqi-born GP, who lived in Walshaw, leaves his wife Monah and daughters Zainab and Halah, who are also both doctors.

Residents observed social-distancing restrictions as the cortege, flanked by cars containing Dr Al-Dubbaisi's immediate family, and several emergency vehicles from BARDOC, the Bury area out-of-hours GP service, where he had also worked for a number of years, passed by.

One onlooker said: "It's unbelieveable. The whole community has come out to pay their respects, which is wonderful."

Earlier Dr Schryer said: "Dr. Al-Dubbaisi was a much-loved, compassionate and experienced GP."

His daughter Zainab added: "Dr Saad Al-Dubbaisi was the most loving and kind husband and father, he will forever be in our hearts.

“Wherever he worked he spread kindness and warmth with his gentle smile and big heart, and was loved by his patients. We will miss him always."

"We are extremely grateful to all the NHS staff who looked after him during his battle with Covid-19.”

The GP had worked in the Bury area for nearly 20 years, after originally graduating from the Baghdad School of Medicine. He was also well known with the United Iraqi Medical Association for the UK and Ireland.

The Ramsbottom doctor is believed to be the first GP in Greater Manchester to die from coronavirus.