The rise of alternative funerals has given people who are looking for more unusual, eco-friendly, or bespoke funerals more options.
16:40 11 January 2016
Different people now have preference for funerals for their loved ones. Instead of following a traditional checklist that involves top hat, highly-lacquered wooden coffins and cremation urns, among others, more and more people are finding ways to properly celebrate the life of their departed family members or friends.
When Rosie Grant’s mother died, she fulfilled her mum’s wish to have a personal and unique funeral. Instead of signing up for services that are typically offered by many traditional undertakers, Ms Grant and her brother arranged for the ceremony to be held in a thatched barn, followed by a woodland burial, with a tree planted on top of the grave.
Ms Grant said: "It wasn't the slickest funeral ever, but it was lovely, and so many people contributed in different ways.”
Her mother’s burial paved the way for her to open Natural Endings in Chorlton, Manchester in 2005 to help other people who are looking for more unusual, eco-friendly, or bespoke funerals.
"It started off as an interest for me," she says. "I wanted to help families create their own farewell rituals."
Since the establishment of her business, Ms Grant has organised funerals in barns, pubs, and at the deceased’s home. He has also organised burials across the UK’s 270 woodland burial sites.
Commenting as to why alternative funerals are becoming more popular these days, Mike Owen, the chief executive of the National Association of Funeral Directors, said: "People are increasingly wanting different formats when it comes to funerals.”
"They want it to be tailored and have a less religious feel. There's more of a focus on celebrating rather than just having a traditional sorrowful service."