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The funeral service
A funeral service is generally considered to be the way of saying goodbye to someone who has passed away. Footprints Funeral Directors are here to take you through some of the choices you will need to decide on so as to ensure you are able to organise the funeral you desire for your loved one.
A cremation or a burial
The first decision that is usually made generally determines the type of service that will be held. Whether you decide upon a cremation or a burial, we will be beside you to help and will make all the arrangements for you.
Things you should consider about a cremation:
- Normally will have less cost than a burial
- Funeral services can be held at the crematorium. Most crematoriums will provide the facility of a service room including other appropriate facilities
- The service can take place in a church or another location of your choice prior to going to the crematorium
- The funeral service will have a strict time limit governing the length of the service. Bear in mind that this can vary according to the crematorium
- A decision will need to be made as to the final resting place of the ashes. The choices are; you can keep the ashes in an urn or you can scatter or bury them.
- It is possible that you already have a family grave or plot. We can make all the arrangements for the familygrave to be reopened and any grave ornamentation temporarily removed prior to the burial
- Some locations have limited burial space or are likely to be expensive
- You should consider reserving plots or perhaps a large plot if you or your family would like to be buried close by
- Availability of a woodland burial plot is now offered in many areas throughout the country. Please contact us if you would like to find out more in regard to woodland burials
- The funeral service can be held in a local church or in a cemetery chapel. And commonly some funeral directors are able to offer a room that you will be able to use for the service if you would prefer
- After the burial, consideration should be given as to whether or not you would like to have a headstone, in memorial of your loved one. Maybe your will need to have a new inscription added to an existing headstone.
- We are able to provide you with advice on the choice of a grave memorial and furthermore provide information in regard to any local regulations.
Supplying information regarding the deceased
- Full name of the deceased
- Their full address
- Their date of birth
- Details of when and where they died
- Confirmation as to whether or not the deceased had a pacemaker fitted, as pacemakers must be removed prior to the cremation.
Arranging the service Transport
The day of the funeral, the hearse will transport the coffin to the funeral service. In most cases, limousines that will be carrying the chief mourners follow the hearse. We are able to provide chauffeur driven limousines so that you do not have to worry about driving, parking and arriving at the service on time.
If there is a special route that you would like the procession to take, please let us know. This is something that can be discussed with you when you book us to make the funeral arrangements.
People often choose the flowers that were the favourite of the person who has passed away. This is another way to make the funeral more personal.
Many types of floral arrangements are available and if you would like to have an idea of the types of flower arrangements people choose, we can help you with your choices to help you decide what is right for you.
In some instances only flowers from the family are preferred and they elect a charitable organisation for people to donate to in place of them purchasing flowers. Although it is worth considering that sending flowers can in itself be a healing gesture for those who have lost someone close. It is valuable to give a choice of either sending flowers or donating money, or perhaps both.
After the funeral we will collect any cards that are with the wreaths and bouquets and hand them to you later if you wish. It is also possible for us to collect any donations on your behalf, and record who donated them and pay them to the charity of your choice.
The music, which includes any hymns, tapes, CDs and in some cases live music, will often play a key part of the funeral service. Churches in some cases have fairly strict rules relating to the type of music that is played. Where there an organ is available, please ensure the organist can play the music you want.
Consider also other ways to make the funeral reflect the life of the person who has passed away. We will do our utmost to ensure that we arrange anything we can for you. Some examples of the special arrangements people choose can include; a horse-drawn hearse and the release of doves either at the crematorium or at the grave.
What happens at the funeral?
Funerals have no predetermined procedures but traditionally the funeral procession will start at the house of the person who has passed away. Or in some instances at the funeral home or hospital, with the coffin and cars travelling to the place where the funeral service will take place. The hearse will sometimes go directly to the service and meet the mourners there.
At the service the coffin is carried in and close family members usually follow the coffin into the service and sit at the front. In the case of a burial, the coffin will be taken to the grave and lowered into the grave while a short service is held.
In a cremation, the coffin will be taken into the chapel at the crematorium and placed on a stand at the front and at the end of the service music will be played and traditionally the coffin disappears from view behind curtains. If it is your wish that the coffin remains on view until after the mourners have left, please advise your funeral director.
It should be noted that there will be a time limit for the service. You can reserve more time at the crematorium if you wish, although there may be cost associated with this. We can advise you on any time restriction and the associated costs.
Traditionally after the funeral, the friends and family of the deceased will get together for refreshments, which in many cases will take place at the deceased’s house, the house of a close family member or at a local pub or maybe an hotel.