Hundreds of people are at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Addington, Christchurch, for Jim Anderton's funeral. Anderton died at the weekend, two weeks shy of his 80th birthday.

Among politicians past and present to pay their respects are ​​Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Finance Minister Grant Robertson, Wigram MP and Cabinet Minister Megan Woods (Anderton's successor in Wigram), Christchurch Mayor and former Labour MP Lianne Dalziel, Auckland Mayor and former Labour leader Phil Goff, former Labour leader David Cunliffe, and Christchurch-based MPs including Labour's Ruth Dyson, Poto Williams and National's Gerry Brownlee and David Carter.

Labour's general secretary Andrew Kirton, former party president Mike Williams, and Council of Trade Unions general secretary Sam Huggard are also attending. Former Labour MPs Clayton Cosgrove and Maryan Street also in attendance.

A big screen is showing photographs and cartoons of Anderton during his 50-odd years of public service, accompanied by music which includes Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah, Art Garfunkel's Bright Eyes and Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On.

Grandchildren and godchildren Gemma Hill, Isabella White, Carlo Pagani, Brad Hill, Paige Hill and Amy Hill act as former deputy prime minister Jim Anderton's pallbearers at his Requiem Mass.
Grandchildren and godchildren Gemma Hill, Isabella White, Carlo Pagani, Brad Hill, Paige Hill and Amy Hill act as former deputy prime minister Jim Anderton's pallbearers at his Requiem Mass.

Father John Craddock is beginning the service. The entrance music is Chariots of Fire.

Anderton's grandchildren are the pallbearers. Te Kahu Whata-a-rangi Anderton-Graham carries a photograph of Anderton.

The grandchildren are lighting candles to represent justice for all and peace for humankind.

Former Prime Minister Jim Bolger and former National MP Philip Burdon are also attending.

Chris Anderton, Jim's son, is giving the first eulogy. His voice is breaking as he thanks the family.

He says his dad was known for his go-karting exploits growing up in Auckland's Grey Lynn. He was also a member of a notorious window-breaking gang that broke some windows in 1948. "There were no prosecutions. Dad, I think it's safe to say you got away with it."

He was also an organiser who loved to win, no matter what the game was, and was an avid reader who interpreted all of Spike Milligan's voices.

"He instilled a love of fishing in my younger brother ... you could say he was overqualified as the Minister of Fisheries."

He taught the joys of cricket, "a game we played and watched together endless times".

He also "loved pies".

"He had a great love of music and introduced us to his idols Bob Dylan, The Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel to name a few. He loved to harmonise."

He said Jim Anderton has a strong moral compass, whether it was over the Bastion Point occupation, opposition to the dawn raids, the deep sense of injustice over the effects of neoliberalism, or fighting for the ChristChurch cathedral.

He is now in the executive in the sky where he will guide Jacinda Ardern to "free dental care".

Fighting tears, Chris Anderton started singing Tom Petty's I Won't Back Down, adding that he was sad that his father would not be there to harmonise.

Brenda Hill is giving the second eulogy.

She said he was a loving and caring member of the family.

"The time's we all spent together over the years have been wonderfully full ... We have laughed with you. We have laughed at you, as it was a competition to get one up on you."

"It is the time we spent together at Christmas and over the summers that were extremely memorable, you with your Santa hat on with a running commentary ... Boxing Day was saved for your passion of cricket, wrestling the remote from mum or the girls, or with your ever-present radio ... Backyard cricket matches were legendary. There was much screaming and yelling, and you didn't like to get out."

Chess was also a huge battle every game. "Jim never got out-witted ... he may have only conceded being beaten only twice."

She also paid tribute to his love of music.

Hairbrush, a radio, a phone and his glasses were the items he never left home without, but consistently left them in movie theatres and taxis.

He was also passionate about the garden or mowing the lawn. "The roses were a delight to you. You'd pick them for mum and take them inside."

"You have been an inspiration in education for the whole family ... in the end broadening our knowledge and our horizons. You have continuously challenged everyone to do better."

"Jim always made every grandchild individually important. He was a great man who will be greatly missed by everyone who came into contact with him."

She said he created a centre of caring and sharing for anyone.

She said his widow Carole will find it hard to fill the gap that is now in her life, but she and others will do their best. "Thank you so much for sharing your life with us."

Brian Roughan is giving the scripture reading. This is followed by singing of The Lord's My Shepherd.

Brendan Daly reads from the Gospel of Luke.

It is the parable of the Good Samaritan.

Monsignor Daly is now giving the homily.

"Jim was always motivated by his Christian principles. He was a person who acted on them rather than talked about them."

He was driven by Christian principles "from his days in the Catholic youth movement to his death.

"Jim believed he had a duty to shape the future ... words are cheap and actions matter. Therefore in his personal life and his political life, Jim lived out what he believed.

"Jim didn't just do big things like KiwiBank. He also cared a great deal about the people down the street or round the corner ... Jim knew the story of the Good Samaritan well. He was truly a neighbour to so many people who came to him for help, whether they were living in the electorate, or somewhere else. He was especially understanding of those who were disadvantaged or who couldn't speak for themselves.

"Jim also made a big difference at a local and national level in New Zealand politics, because he took his principles and acted on them for all those who were disadvantaged in any way. He was conscious of the gap between rich and poor. He was conscious of foreign banks reaping big profits out of Kiwis. He had a strong sense of the common good and always opposed individualism and selfishness that permeates so much of our society. Lots of people make compromises to be liked or get advancement. Jim did not do that. He was a man of principle who didn't sell himself to the highest bidder."

The service is now hearing the Prayers of the Faithful. They are themed around fighting for a fairer and just society, to help the disadvantaged, and for the carers that helped Anderton during his illness. And for comfort for Anderton's family.

Tears in Heaven is playing as communion takes place.

Sam White, Anderton's grandson, is now giving a eulogy.

"Every experience we had with grandad will stay with us forever", from chess games that "run for hours" to the Christmas gift-giving to the road trips and milkshake-drinking and spicy food-eating competitions.

"Our grandad taught us how to be competitive, but also how to be a good sportsperson. He taught us how to win, but also how to take a loss ... how to respect others as well as yourself.

"He was someone who had morals and stuck by them, and as a grandchild that was something very inspiring."

He called Anderton after every cricket game and they spent hours watching the game together. "There is a huge part of our lives that is now gone."

Amy Hill, Anderton's grand-daughter, read a poem from her cousins from a road trip through the USA.

"Sshh, here's a secret but it's true. Everyone needs a grandpa just like you."

The final eulogy is from close friend and former Progressive MP Matt Robson, who served in Parliament from 1996 to 2005 with Anderton's Alliance Party and then the Progressive Party.

He said Jim was the leader of his party, but also a friend.

"The tributes this weekend reflect the political giant he was and will remain."

He said Chariots of Fire was played on every street corner where Anderton spoke for 27 years as an electorate MP, prompting electorate staff to beg for a change.

He said Anderton had a resolute desire to help as many individuals as he could, and seek justice for all.

He paid tribute to his widow Carole, saying Anderton could not have achieved what he did without her. "As my mum said, if you want a man for the job, get a woman."

He recalled asking Helen Clark in the 1980s if Anderton was the "genuine article", and she replied that he was. His friendship with Anderton started on the protest front lines of the Springbok tour of 1981.

He said Anderton injected renewed life in to the Labour Party after being elected party president in 1979. "For old and new Labour members alike, Jim provided a clear set of principles."

"It's a mark of his greatness that so many people across so many political parties ... are here today. I thank them."

Robson said Anderton demonstrated through the Vietnam War how important it was to take the right stance regardless of whether public opinion was on your side. "Do what is right, not what is politically expedient."

Anderton was close to winning the party presidency in 1988, which may have changed history. He was expelled from the caucus in 1989 and formed NewLabour, with the support of thousands of people who had turned their back on Labour.

Robson is giving a political history of Anderton's life, from NewLabour to the Alliance to the Progressive Party. He said in 1996 Anderton drew a line in the sand over using migrants as a "punching bag".

He said Anderton and Helen Clark put their political friction behind them when they joined in coalition in 1999.

Chris Anderton is kneeling next to his father's coffin, his hand on the coffin.

"This is not your normal retirement set of activities," Robson said of his advocacy to rebuild the ChristChurch cathedral and fundraising for the AMI Stadium.

He said Anderton would consider Robson's policy suggestions and reply: "Don't think. Know."

He spoke of Anderton's legendary work ethic: "It was no good leaving your phone off the hook and claiming Helen had rung you. He would send a fax saying 'call me now'."

"If the Opposition didn't kill you, your party comrades might."

"If genuine adversity struck, Jim was the first to be by your side and offer you his hand."

He said Anderton's favourite cricket analogy was to say they were playing Australia, with nine wickets down and chasing 400 to win, and to play with "dogged determination and straight bat".

And, Anderton's favourite saying was "Lay your footpath where the people walk."

"Now we say goodbye to a remarkable New Zealander who truly lay his footpath where the people walk."

"Jim would want us to evaluate his life, warts and all, not to put him on a pedestal to sainthood."

He said Anderton authored a book called Unsung Heroes in 1999. "It's time for Jim to join Colonel Malone in that book." He is a fighting spirit who should be remembered for the union mantra - "Do not mourn. Organise."

The saying is from Labour songwriter Joe Hill.

A teary Chris Anderton is being comforted as he stands with his hand on his father's coffin. The congregation is singing How Great Thou Art.

Family members in the front row are now embracing.

Family members, including Chris, are now carrying the coffin out of the church.

Former Deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton is being farewelled in the city he served as the Sydenham and Wigram MP from 1984 until his retirement from Parliament in 2011.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has called Anderton a man of "huge integrity, huge compassion, a man who stood strongly for what he believed in and gave 40 years of service both in local government and central government".

"He will be sadly, sadly missed by the Labour movement and by all his friends and family."

Jim Anderton's son Chris says he has been overwhelmed with support after his father's death at the weekend.

Writing on Facebook this morning, Chris Anderton thanked people for the messages of supported he had received: "They uplift me."

Anderton was two weeks shy of his 80th birthday when he died peacefully in Christchurch.

Anderton's legacy has been praised since his death, from his principled stance in 1989 when he left the Labour Party in protest over Rogernomics and the sale of BNZ, to his championing MMP as leader of the Alliance.

His work in the Helen Clark-led Government included helping to set up KiwiBank, the NZ Superannuation Fund, paid parental leave and several regional development initiatives such as the Marlborough Wine Research Centre.

After he retired, he served as chair of the Stadium Trust and pushed for the rebuild of the ChristChurch Cathedral.

Last year Anderton was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Parliament.

He will be buried on Waiheke Island on Saturday.