A memorial service for actor Heath Ledger has taken place in his home town of Perth, with film stars and relatives among those attending.

The 500 guests at the service, held at Penrhos College in the Perth suburb of Como, included actress Cate Blanchett, actor Bryan Brown and Michelle Williams, Ledger’s ex girlfriend and mother of his daughter Matilda.

The service came ahead of the 28-year-old’s funeral, which will be a private affair for close family only – while a wake will also be held at the city’s Cottesloe Beach.

A memorial servce for the actor was also held in Los Angeles last week.

Ledger’s father Kim told local reporters that the family wanted to be allowed the chance to grieve alone.

“We’re finding it pretty difficult to cope by ourselves, let alone with everyone else around the world,” he said.

“The funeral service will be very very private and there will only be 10 people there, immediate family and nobody else.”

The Brokeback Mountain star was found dead in his New York apartment on January 22.

A US medical examiner has ruled that he died of an accidental overdose of six different drugs – ibuprofen, painkiller OxyContin, anti-anxiety medication Xanax and Valium, and sleeping pills Restoril and Unisom.