What is a Cremation service?
The majority of all funerals in the UK are cremations, rather than burials. If you’re not sure what to expect at a cremation service, our guide will help you understand what happens when a loved one is cremated, but also how we help you to prepare for the cremation service.
Read on to find out:
- What cremation paperwork do I need?
- What happens at a cremation service?
- How long is a cremation service?
- What is the cremation process?
- What is the cost of cremation?
- What to do with ashes after cremation
The Process In Brief
When your loved ones death is expected due to an illness and this has occurred at home or in a nursing home contact should be made with their GP in the first instance to inform him / her on what has happened. They may then visit or arrange for a registered district nurse to do this on their behalf. Arrangements will then be made for the GP to prepare a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death to verify the death; this is usually collected by you directly from the Medical Practice of the GP within the next or a few days later. When you have this you can then telephone the local Registration Office to make an appointment to formally register the death when the necessary certificate will be given. You must register, where possible, within 5 days of the death.
In Kidderminster it is usual to make an appointment on telephone number 01905 768181 and attend the Registration office located at Kidderminster Town Hall, Vicar Street, Kidderminster, Worcs’ DY10 1DB. The Registration Office offers a free service called “ Tell Us Once ” this means they will contact on your behalf any government related department to notify them of what has happened e.g. anything to do with benefits, driving licence etc. They will also make contact with local Councils
Before the cremation service can take place, we will help you ensure all the required paperwork is submitted to the Cremation Authority.
Registrar’s Certificate for Burial or Cremation
Also known as the green form, you should obtain this when you register the death of a loved one.
Application for a cremation (Cremation 1 form)
The application for cremation authorises the process to take place. It should be completed by a relative or close friend of the deceased and is normally completed and signed at the funeral directors.
The Cremation Authority will often require two medical certificates from two separate doctors (cremation 4 and cremation 5). The first part of the Medical Certificate must be signed by a doctor who has viewed the deceased and determined the cause of the death.
The second part of the Medical Certificate (cremation 5) must be signed by a second independent doctor who must also certify the fact and cause of death.
What happens if a coroner is involved in the cremation process?
You will not be required to provide medical certificates if a coroner is involved. In England and Wales, you will be given Form 6 by a coroner. In Scotland, you will be given Form E by a procurator fiscal.
What happens before cremation takes place?
Before the service takes place, the hearse will take the coffin or casket to the crematorium and limousines carrying family and close friends will follow in the funeral procession. Upon arrival, pallbearers will take the coffin into the chapel, placing it on a raised platform called a catafalque.
Depending on the beliefs of you and your loved one, a cremation service can be religious or non-religious. Some cremations begin with a separate funeral service, which can be held in a place of worship or other venue separate from the crematorium.
Typically, the coffin will remain on the catafalque whilst the service takes place. The end of the service is known as the committal and the coffin is usually lowered, hidden by curtains, or taken out of the chapel.
After the cremation service, the funeral director will lead close family out of the chapel, followed by other mourners. If you would prefer the coffin to remain on view until everyone has left the chapel, our caring professionals can arrange that for you.
If you wish to play a loved one’s favourite piece of music during the service, most crematoria will be able to facilitate this for you. Some crematoria also have video streaming facilities available, allowing absent family and friends to watch the cremation service live on the internet.
The duration of the service varies between crematoria, though it is usually 45 minutes. This allows enough time for people to enter the chapel, hold the service and pay their final respects to the deceased.
The cremation ceremony will always take place on the same day as the service, usually within a few hours. A close family member may witness the ‘charging’ of the cremators, as some religions require. Every cremation is carried out in accordance with the Cremation Code of Practice.
It’s important to keep the following funeral costs in mind when planning a cremation for your loved one. Please see our costs page for our Direct and Traditional Cremation Packages.