What is Direct Cremation?
Direct Cremation is a relatively new concept in the UK, but one that has received a lot of media attention. It is simply the provision of a low cost, unattended cremation without a funeral ceremony. There is no hearse, no procession, and no service in the crematorium. The coffin is cremated without any ceremony and without any family or friends in attendance.
Who chooses this?
The reasons for choosing Direct Cremation could be ethical, financial or practical. It is not uncommon for the person who has died to have specified that they wish their body to be cremated with no ceremony or service. Direct Cremation can suit families who cannot afford to meet the costs of a conventional funeral, but is also popular with people who are perfectly able to pay for a traditional funeral, but choose not to because they do not feel the need to have a public ceremony, or they wish to have a memorial service at a later date without the coffin present. Direct cremation can be a practical option for someone who has died away from their home country so that the ashes can be returned home.
During the Covid-19 pandemic some families were unable to attend the funeral as they were unwell, shielding or self isolating. For some, they opted for a direct cremation with the intention of holding a larger, public ceremony once the lockdown measures are eased, perhaps even on the anniversary of the death.
How much does it cost?
For information about all our funeral prices, please visit our funeral costs page here.
What area do you cover?
Rosedale Funeral Home can offer a Direct Cremation service when the death has occurred at home or in a nursing home within a 15 mile radius of our funeral homes,
What if my loved one has died further away?
If death occurs outside of this area we may still be able to help you, so please contact us for advice on your specific circumstances.
If death occurs at home or in a care home it is common that the doctor who confirms death will not be the same doctor who issues the certificate for cremation. As part of this procedure, the doctor has to identify the deceased and so they request that the deceased is not moved out of the area until they have completed this paperwork. Under these circumstances we usually recommend that a local funeral director is called to take care of the deceased until the paperwork is complete. They will make a charge for this service which is usually in the region of £250 – £300, and you should ensure that you are settled with this charge before you ask them to come out.
What is included?
Once the legal paperwork for the cremation is completed, the deceased is collected from the place of death within normal working hours and brought to our premises. He or she is placed in a simple coffin and is taken to a crematorium of our choice to be cremated. After the cremation, the cremated remains can be scattered at the crematorium or we can collect them from the crematorium for you along with the certificate of cremation.
Our price includes our professional services to arrange the cremation, advice on registration, completion and delivery of all statutory paperwork to the crematorium, payment of statutory crematorium and doctors’ fees (where applicable), the care of the deceased, a simple coffin with a name plate, transport of the coffin to the crematorium in a respectful manner, the necessary staff and the creation of an online tribute site.
What is excluded?
Any funeral procession or service prior to cremation, embalming, the hearse or limousine, pall bearers, choice of coffin, attendance of friends and family at the cremation, attendance of a funeral director, religious minister or celebrant, music to be played, flowers and notices in the press are all excluded. We do not administer any donations in memory of the deceased, although we will (if desired) assist with the creation of an online tribute site on our website to inform others of the death and arrangements for donations. The need to provide one or more of these services constitutes a traditional funeral service and therefore Direct Cremation would not be applicable.
Can you help me to organise a ceremony following a direct cremation?
If you are opting for a memorial service to follow the direct cremation, we can assist you will all aspects of this. Essentially Funeral Directors are event planners and we have many years of experience in managing services and ceremonies with or without a coffin. You may choose to do this as part of the ceremony prior to scattering or burying the cremated remains, or you could choose a significant date such as a birthday or anniversary.
There are lots of things to be considered and we can listen to your ideas and support you, getting involved as much or as little as you would like us to be. We can help to take the pressure off with lots of the red tape involved, such as risk assessments, public liability insurance and music licenses, as well as recommending suitable venues, caterers and photographers and providing service sheets, audio equipment, keepsakes and memorial books.
How can direct cremation be so inexpensive?
The amount of staff time involved on a direct cremation is significantly lower than on a traditional funeral, and the administration is also much reduced as there are fewer third parties to liaise with and the funeral takes place at a day and time that is convenient to us. There is no need to use the hearse and limousine which are extremely expensive specialist vehicles.
A word of warning.
There are national companies who offer a direct cremation service for a very minimal cost. These low-cost packages do not include for ANY care of the deceased. The deceased will simply be collected from the hospital, placed in a coffin and taken to their central holding area which serves the whole country. There will be no last offices carried out, no washing or dressing of the deceased and any catheters or cannulas will all be left in situ.
The direct cremation service that we offer ensures that last offices are carried out by caring, qualified staff and any deceased brought into the care of Rosedale will be washed and dressed. Should you wish, viewing in the chapel of rest is also possible for an additional charge
We are able to offer this low priced funeral by reducing our overheads and our risk to debt, therefore we request that the full cost of the funeral is paid by in full by debit card or BACS transfer within 72 hours of making the funeral arrangements.
If for any reason the full cost is not paid in advance of the funeral, we reserve the right to increase our fees to our standard prices or to cancel the funeral arrangements.
How do we arrange a Direct Cremation?
We can arrange the funeral with you face to face, or over the telephone. All relevant forms can be posted to you. You will need to return these to us along with either the Registrar’s Certificate for Cremation or the Coroner’s Order for Cremation which you will need to organise. Once we are in receipt of all the completed paperwork and you have arranged payment in full, we will arrange and carry out the cremation. The cremation will usually be organised within seven days of us receiving the signed paperwork and the cremation will take place within 72 hours of the arrival of the coffin at the crematorium.
Is this a communal cremation?
The Cremation Act sets out very strict criteria concerning cremation in the UK and each cremation is carried out individually. The cremated remains will have a certificate to accompany them which confirms this.
Do you re-use the coffin?
No, we don’t. The deceased is delivered to the crematorium in a simple coffin and the coffin is placed into the cremator in its entirety.
Can I collect the ashes?
Yes, of course. We will collect the ashes from the crematorium and keep these at our funeral home. They will usually be available to you within 28 days. You can come and collect these from us during office hours, please bring along some form of identification for the ashes to be released to you.
It is possible to have the ashes transferred into a casket, urn or scatter tube, incorporated into jewellery or even put into a firework. Please talk to us about the possibilities.
Why should I choose Rosedale Funeral Home for a Direct Cremation?
Rosedale Funeral Home is an award winning, local family business who have built their reputation by providing exceptional service at an affordable cost and we believe our attention to detail and personal service sets us apart from other funeral directors.
Even the simplest service deserves to be provided in a dignified, caring manner, and by selecting Rosedale for the direct cremation, your loved one can remain in their home county. Our service is caring and professional and we are available for advice and support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Our charges are transparent and fair and our care of the deceased is second to none. We are members of the National Association of Funeral Directors and observe their code of conduct at all times.
We are the only funeral directors in Norfolk and Suffolk to be recommended by both the Good Funeral Guide and the Natural Death Centre.
Our certificate of recommendation by the Good Funeral Guide says “It is our judgement that here you will be: Listened to with empathy, offered the full range of choice, given all the time you need, charged fairly, and empowered to arrange a funeral which reflects your wishes and values and those of the person who has died.”
Not the done thing?
We’re quoting Charles Cowling from the Good Funeral Guide here, who says, “Direct Cremation is still reckoned unconventional. If you choose it, it may well raise an eyebrow here and there. Alternatively, some people are likely to say, “I wish I’d thought of that”. When John Lennon was killed, Yoko Ono had John’s body cremated unceremoniously and unwitnessed. She held a memorial service instead, to take place everywhere and anywhere. “Pray for his soul from wherever you are.”
Can I arrange a Direct Cremation in advance?
Yes, you can take out a pre-paid funeral plan for a direct cremation. The costs are all as above. The money will be paid into a secure trust fund and the prices will not be subject to any future increases. There is an administration fee of £230. For more information about pre-paid funerals please visit ‘Why choose a pre-paid plan?’
Have a different question?
Deciding whether or not to opt for Direct Cremation can be a big decision. If you would like to talk through anything, just give us a call.