This step-by-step guide will help you prepare for a burial and talk you through what happens before, during and after a burial funeral service.
This guide will cover:
Before a burial can take place, you will need to provide the following paperwork. Our caring professionals will ensure all the required paperwork is completed and submitted.
Certificate for burial
Also known as the green form, you should obtain this when you register the death of a loved one.
Burial plot application form
If you wish to purchase a new grave or re-open an existing plot, you will need to sign an application form which is often issued by your local council or cemetery.
The exclusive right of burial is typically purchased for a period of 75 years and the burial plot will have certain conditions attached to it depending on the type of grave.
If your family already own the Exclusive Rights of Burial for a grave, and you can produce either the Deed of Exclusive Rights of Burial or evidence that you are the proper person to have the Burial Rights, then arrangements can be made for an interment to take place.
If a coroner or procurator fiscal is involved
If a coroner holds an inquest, an order for burial (form 101) will be issued in place of the green form.
In Scotland, if a post-mortem is held, the death certificate will be issued by the pathologist. The funeral can take place after the death certificate is issued. A copy of the post-mortem examination report, which usually gives the cause of death, can also be requested.
What happens before a burial?
Before the burial takes place, the hearse will take the coffin or casket to the cemetery or churchyard and limousines carrying chief mourners will follow in the funeral procession.
Depending on the beliefs of you and your loved one, a burial service can be religious or non-religious. Some burials begin with a separate funeral service, which can be held in a place of worship or other venue separate from the cemetery.
Whether the burial is in a churchyard, cemetery or woodland burial site, we prepare the burial plot in advance, ensuring it is the correct size and in the right place ready for when the service is held.
A burial ceremony is usually a short service held after the main funeral service as the coffin is lowered into the ground. Mourners are often invited to attend the burial, which may include short readings and prayers, depending on religious beliefs.
It is common tradition to scatter soil onto the coffin after it has been lowered, while other people may choose to throw funeral flowers into the grave. When the ceremony concludes, family and friends place floral tributes near the grave.
Our professional and understanding Funeral Directors will be on hand to help you check local regulations and availability when choosing a grave or burial plot for your loved one.
You may already have a family plot which we can arrange to be reopened before burial. If this is the case, we will require the deeds and relevant paperwork. Please do not worry if this paperwork isn’t available, as we will be able to help locate these for you.
If you would like your family to be buried close to each other, you can inquire about purchasing or reserving multiple plots. If this is the case, please speak to the local authorities about their specific rules and regulations.
Burial costs vary significantly across the UK and are beyond our control. Our funeral professionals will be on hand to co-ordinate these third party costs.
Please keep the following costs in mind when planning a burial for your loved one:
- The exclusive right of burial (EROB) – this is the physical space itself, often known as the burial plot
- The interment – this fee is for the preparation of the burial plot or grave
- Reopening an existing burial plot
- Removal and replacement of existing memorials
- Purchasing a new memorial or headstone
- The coffin or casket for your loved one
It’s important to take your loved one’s wishes into account when deciding on how to plan a funeral or burial. Please remember that if the deceased was not a resident of the area you wish to bury them in, unfortunately the cost may be significantly more. Our Funeral Directors will be able to advise you on costs and local charges.