Jeremy Corbyn and Ed Miliband are among the politicians who have paid their respects to former veteran Labour MP Michael Meacher, as the past and present Labour leaders attended his funeral in London on 13 November. The left-winger had represented Oldham West and Royton and the seat's previous incarnation since 1970.

His death on 21 October at the age of 75 triggered a by-election and Labour has since selected Oldham Council's Jim McMahon to defend Meacher's 14,700 strong majority.

"He was a valued friend and commentator utterly committed to democracy in our party and movement, as well as in the wider community," Corbyn said after Meacher's death. "His contributions on social justice, equality, environment and economic policy showed a man of enormous breath and intellectual vision.

"I was very sad and very shocked at hearing of his death earlier today and my sympathies and condolences go to his family, his many friends and admirers who all realise that in Michael we have lost a good man of fundamental decency who exemplified the very best socialist and labour traditions of this country."

Ukip and the Eurosceptic party's candidate John Bickley have asked their activists to halt campaigning on 13 November out of respect to Meacher as his friends and family pay their last respects to the former parliamentarian.

Meanwhile, Natalie Bennett was due to visit Oldham West on 13 November to canvass alongside the party's by-election candidate, Simeon Hart. The trip was also planned to include a visit to a solar technology firm in Royton.

Hart, McMahon and Bickley will be up against Conservative candidate James Daly, Liberal Democrat hopeful Jane Brophy and the Monster Raving Loony party's Sir Oink-A-Lot in the 3 December vote.