Cambridgeshire Registrar of Births & Deaths
Ascham Road, Cambridge CB4 2BD Tel: 0345 0451363 www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk
The Natural Death Centre has a list of over 300 woodland burial sites in the UK. Tracy will be happy to arrange a funeral at any of these site. Call the helpline on 01962 712 690.
'What to do after a Death' checklist
The Good Funeral Guide is an excellent objective resource with helpful information on how to create a meaningful ceremony.
Cruse Bereavement Care provides telephone and face-to-face support. You can talk to a trained volunteer by calling the helpline on 0844 477 9400 between 9.30am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Myth busting facts about funerals
1. There is no legal obligation to use a funeral director. You can take charge of some, or all, of the funeral arrangements yourself.
2. You don’t have to use a traditional black hearse. It can be any vehicle, even a family estate car.
3. You don’t have to have a traditional wooden coffin. The options are endless: willow, bamboo, cardboard, a shroud or you can even make or decorate the coffin yourself!
4. The body can stay at home. If this feels right for you, this is absolutely possible.
5. The body does not have to be embalmed or sutured. These highly invasive procedures are not necessary. The body can be left in its natural state.
6. Many independent-looking funeral directors are not independent. This is important work. Make sure you know who you’re employing.
7. The body is rarely kept at the funeral director’s high street shop. Many funeral directors operate large ‘hub’ mortuaries, often located many miles from the high street branches they serve. Ask where the body will be cared for.
8. Funerals don’t have to be expensive. Shop around or ask a friend to do so on your behalf. Make sure you’re not sold products or services you don’t want or need.
9. Euphemisms aren’t helpful. If you’re not sure what the funeral director is trying to tell you, ask them to clarify what they’re saying.
10. Funeral directors don’t know best. Families do. A good funeral director will support a family to have the funeral that’s right for them.