Unattended Burial or Cremation

What is an unattended funeral?

Unattended funerals are 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.

standard cremation burial
Why do people choose an unattended funeral?
There are many reasons why someone might want an unattended funeral, some are listed below:


✔ They firmly believe that there is no need for a funeral

✔ Their loved ones may decide that a separate memorial service is more appropriate

✔ Perhaps there is no close family or it is difficult for family to gather together for a funeral

✔ Loved ones wishing to spend the least amount of money as possible

What are the options and how much does it cost?

We offer two unattended cremations, and two unattended burials. For more information, including cost, please click below.

Unattended burial or cremation
Enhanced unattended burial or cremation
Download and/or print our 'Unattended' information booklet
Frequently Asked Questions

What area do you cover?

We can look after a loved one within a 15 miles radius of any one of our branches.

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.

It may be that there will be extra travel or funeral director expenses depending on the distance and requirements.

What is included?

We offer two different unattended cremations and two different unattended burials. Please see the links above for a comprehensive breakdown of what’s included for each.

Can you help me to organise a ceremony following an unattended funeral?

Of course.

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 burying of 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 is an unattended funeral cheaper than an attended funeral?

The amount of staff time involved on a direct cremation is significantly lower than on a traditional funeral. The administration is reduced, there is no need to use the hearse/limousines, there are fewer third parties to liaise with and the funeral takes place at a day and time that is convenient to us.

Is there anything I should be wary of?

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 the deceased will be brought into the care of Rosedale.

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 and all relevant forms can be posted to you if necessary.

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.

Is this a communal cremation?

Absolutely not.

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.  The person who signed the paperwork will be able to collect these from us during office hours, or alternatively they can provide us with written permission for someone else to collect them.

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 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 £275.  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 an unattended funeral can be a big decision.  If you would like more information or just to talk through the options, please don’t hesitate to give our friendly team a call.