Alternatives to planning a traditional funeral

Here are a few suggestions: direct cremation, woodland burial, donate your body to science, home burial.

What is a Direct Cremation?
This is a cheaper alternative to a full service and a cremation. This has become more popular in recent years and more so during the pandemic faced in 2020, where guests were limited at a funeral. Service levels may vary but the body is collected by the company once the price and service is agreed at a specific time and date, the remains are brough back to you and you then can organise your own distribution of ashes and a celebration of your loved ones life how you wish. Prices for this service start at around £900.

What is Humanist Funeral?
This service is usually a non-religious and is often held at a crematorium but can vary to wherever you choose and maybe in combination to a direct cremation. There can be non-religious songs, poems, readings, music with friends and family the service is usually taken by a humanist celebrant or even a close friend or relative.

What is Home Burial
This is where you or a loved one can be buried at your family home or similar, but the site would need to be approved beforehand. It is also worth considering where the site will be in the family forever it would be heart-breaking to leave you or your loved one behind, if the site becomes privately owned away from the family and access to visit would be denied. However, if cremation is an option, you could then potentially leave a small amount of the ashes in a garden of remembrance or similar.

What is a Woodland Burial?
There are sites through the UK and Ireland that accommodate woodland burials. This is where you can be buried amongst the trees, nature and woodland. This can be religious, but it is usually a nonreligious option where friends and family can gather around nature. However lots of Woodland Burial sites do not allow embalming due to the environment and the release of chemicals in the ground, so if you are considering this option we would suggest not to be embalmed or have visitations after death but please do discuss with burial site and funeral directors.

What is a Burial at Sea?
You can choose to bury your body at sea as your final resting place, perhaps if you are a sailor, fisherman or just love the ocean but this extremely costly and must be organised by specialists. You could distribute your ashes at sea as a cost-efficient alternative.

What is Promession?
This is an environmentally friendly process where your body is freeze dried with liquid nitrogen and broken down into ash it was created in Sweden and is legal in the United Kingdom, and South Korea. It costs in the region of £8000+

What is Organ and Body donation?
This is where you can donate your full body and organs to science and medical development. This will mean where possible your healthy organs and remains can be donated and transplanted to save another.
There are many more options to a traditional funeral and your wishes can always be followed but here is a selection of the most popular. You can choose ‘other’ throughout your funeral planner and add your own bespoke wishes. We would advise to make the wishes manageable both financially and realistically whilst in a state of grief.