The Crematoria and Memorial Group (CMG) is continuously monitoring and responding to this outbreak and advice from the UK Government. This Q&A will be updated as more is known about COVID-19, how it spreads and how it is affecting people.

Arranging a funeral

Can I delay the funeral?

Wherever possible, funerals should not be delayed. The CMG will work with your Funeral Director to find a suitable date and time. However, you need to be aware that delaying may mean that further restrictions are in place in the future based on the Government guidance at that time.

Will the funeral be delayed?

No. Right now, funerals can be arranged as usual with no impact on timings.
However, there is every possibility that as current events progress this may change.

How many people can attend the funeral I am organising? 

In order to adhere to government guidelines on social distancing, the maximum number of mourners allowed to attend a funeral service will vary depending on the size of our chapels. Please contact your local crematorium for more information.

Attending a funeral

Can I still collect donations at the funeral?

At The CMG we are not facilitating any collections. We recommend an online donations service is used if required.

Can I attend a funeral at the crematorium?

Yes - if you are confirmed to be an immediate family member of the deceased or a very close friend. Please only attend if you have been specifically invited as there are restrictions in place depending on the size of the chapel. Adherence to government guidelines on social distancing is required, especially those individuals deemed to be most at risk. Please contact your local crematorium for more information.

Can I attend a burial service?

Yes - if you are confirmed to be an immediate family member of the deceased or a very close friend. Please only attend if you have been specifically invited as there are restrictions in place to limit the number of mourners at the graveside, up to a maximum of 30. Adherence to government guidelines on social distancing is required, especially those individuals deemed to be most at risk.

Can I use the crematorium chapel for a burial?

Yes, burial services are permitted to enter the crematorium chapels. Please only attend if you have been specifically invited as there are restrictions in place depending on the size of the chapel. Adherence to government guidelines on social distancing is required, especially those individuals deemed to be most at risk. Please contact your local crematorium for more information.

How can I ensure I stay as safe as possible whilst attending a funeral?

Mourners who are not part of the same household are advised to stay the recommended 2 metres apart from each other and avoid shaking hands or making other physical contact. It is also advised that you do not share stationery items (orders of service, condolence cards) or pens amongst mourners who are not part of the same household.

I have symptoms of Coronavirus / can’t attend the funeral in person, how else can I view the service?

If anyone is displaying symptoms or suffering from COVID-19 they should not attend the crematorium at all.

The vast majority of CMG crematoriums are able to provide webcasting, which will enable those who are unable to attend to still view the funeral service online rather than attending the crematorium. We would strongly recommend this option is taken up wherever possible.

Individuals attending with the necessary device and airtime plan could video call someone who is self-isolating as an alternative solution as well.

Do I need to wear a face covering when attending a Funeral?

Yes. As of 8th August 2020 Public Health England has made it mandatory for face coverings to be worn in our chapels.

Can I witness the charging of the coffin?

Unfortunately, at present it is not possible for us to facilitate a witness charging.

Hygiene and safety

What hygiene measures are you putting in place?           

We already operate with the highest levels of hygiene and safety standards across all of our locations. However, we have implemented additional cleaning routines and procedures in line with guidance from Public Health England to ensure the safety of our staff and all visitors. 

Crematoria and Cemeteries

Can I visit the Crematorium, Cemetery, or memorial site?

Yes, memorial grounds are currently open to members of the public. The CMG would like to politely remind all visitors that social distancing must be respected within our grounds at all times should you come into contact with other members of the public or a member of staff.

Are you still open for Memorial appointments?

Yes, we are now open for memorial appointments. If you wish to discuss a memorial, please contact your local crematorium directly to make an appointment. Walk-in appointments are still not permitted at this time.

What happens if a crematorium has to close?   

As a nationwide network of funeral directors and crematoria, we are able to work with colleagues and facilities in other parts of the country should we require additional support.

This means clients will receive the same high standards of care and service even if one of our crematoria has to close or is affected by COVID-19. We recognise this may mean the service takes place at a different location, but we will do our best to ensure this still meets the needs of the family at a reasonable distance.

Are you still allowing Horse Drawn Funerals?

Yes - following the changes to legislation announced on 22nd April 2020, we are pleased to be able to permit horse drawn hearses again at our crematoriums. Mourners and Funeral staff are reminded to still adhere to the guidelines around social distancing.

Are you currently accepting wicker and / or cardboard coffins?

Yes, although they will need to be sanitised in the same way as every other coffin.

Can Funeral Directors still collect ashes?

Yes - by appointment only and preferably when several sets are ready for collection. The ideal time to do so will be whilst attending a service, to minimise footfall to our grounds.

Are you still allowing additional services for funerals, e.g. doves, pipers etc?

Yes - following the changes to legislation announced on 22nd April 2020, we are pleased to be able to permit additional services such as the release of doves and bagpipers at our crematoriums. Mourners and Funeral staff are reminded to still adhere to the guidelines around social distancing.

Are DIY funeral services still available at your grounds? 

No, until confirmed otherwise, we will not offer a DIY funeral service to a family. We cannot ensure the coffin will have been handled and sanitised correctly so unfortunately are currently unable to offer this service.

Cremation Services

Are you going to limit the number of people who can attend the service?

In order to adhere to government guidelines on social distancing, the maximum number of mourners allowed to attend a funeral service will vary depending on the size of our chapel. Please contact your local crematorium for more information.

Are we allowed to carry the coffin of our loved one?

We request that wheeled trollies are used during this time and that families do not carry the coffin into chapel in order to minimise contact with the coffin and to mitigate the need to engage Crematorium staff in bearing.

Can we still have visual tributes and webcasting, if offered?

Yes you can. Webcasting facilities (where applicable) shall continue to be offered for now, however we are at the behest of our service providers as to how long this may continue. This shall further be dependent on the availability of our workforce which may be fluid.

Can we still bring flowers?

Yes you can, your Funeral Director will place them into chapel and remove them again at the end of the service.

Can the curtains remain open?

Please contact your local crematorium for further information.

Are you still providing hymn books?

Hymn books have been removed from our chapels. Should families have Orders of Service these must be circulated by the family or Funeral Director, with any copies removed at the end of the service.

Can I use the chapel for a service with no cremation, e.g. burial?

Yes, burial services are permitted to enter the crematorium chapels. Please only attend if you have been specifically invited as there are restrictions in place depending on the size of the chapel. Adherence to government guidelines on social distancing is required, especially those individuals deemed to be most at risk. Please contact your local crematorium for more information.

Do you still provide an organist?

No, during this time we have suspended the use of our organ. We will work with families to ensure that any specific music requirements can be played through our music system.

Can I collect my loved one's ashes from the Crematorium?

Yes, however this must be via appointment only. Please contact the crematorium directly to arrange an appointment.  

Memorials and Gardens of Remembrance

Are your Gardens of Remembrance remaining open?

Yes, memorial grounds are currently open to members of the public. Social distancing must be respected within our grounds at all times should you come into contact with other members of the public or a member of staff, and in line with the Government’s directive, gatherings of more than 2 people are not permitted during this time*

*Please note our sites in Enfield and East London are currently operating under restricted opening hours. Please contact the site directly for more information.

Will my Memorial be delayed?

We are working very closely with all of our suppliers to ensure there is minimal disruption.

Is the Crematorium Office Open?

The crematorium offices are currently closed. If you need to contact a member of staff, please use the telephone number provided on our website.

How can I contact the Crematorium?

You can either telephone or email, using the details on our website.

Will my garden still be cared for?

Our grounds staff will continue to care for our Gardens of Remembrance.

What will your staff do differently?

Wherever possible they will wear gloves and change them regularly. All surfaces and door handles etc. will be cleaned and sanitised regularly.

 

We all need to ensure we are washing our hands regularly.

Top of page