Mourners will gather today to pay their last respects to three children who died in a fire at their home.

The funeral service for Marcus, Patricia and Samantha Carter will take place at St Edward the Confessor Church in Leek, Staffordshire, this morning.

The siblings - aged seven, ten and 16 respectively - died in an alleged arson attack at their semi-detached house in Hillside Road, Cheddleton, on March 9.

Their mother Amanda Carter's partner Roderick Hine was also killed in the attack.

A service was held to remember 44-year-old Mr Hine at All Saints' Church in Leek on Tuesday. It was attended by about 500 family members and friends, including dozens of bikers who turned out to accompany the hearse to Carmountside Crematorium in Stoke-on-Trent.

In a statement released through Staffordshire Police ahead of the service, the family paid tribute to the youngsters.

The statement read: "Sammy, Tricia and Marcy were beautiful, happy children who were full of life.

"As soon as Marcy came in from school he wanted to play football outside.

"Tricia loved music and dancing. She loved the group 'The Pussycat Dolls'. Tricia also loved classical music, and would often fall asleep listening to it." n Mark Goldstraw (31), of Compton House, Leek, has been charged with four counts of murder. ..SUPL: