Me in my Officiants gear


WEDDINGS  NAMINGS  back to ceremonies

A humanist funeral is a positive, and dignified, non-religious celebration of the life of a loved-one. We recognise that all life ends, and we accept that there is no evidence of a life after death, so we concentrate on the life that has been, taking comfort in the fact that they will live on in our memories. The music, chosen by the family, reflects the tastes, or evokes memories of those special moments shared with their loved-ones. That could be classical, jazz, pop etc. - it could be played on the organ - played live by friends or family - or could be provided, by the family, on tape or CD. Family and friends can read their own tribute - a poem or prose - or recount their own reminiscences. Or I could read them on their behalf, We would have a quiet time for reflection, when we come to the committal. That would be the time when I would invite those who have a religious faith, to say a quiet prayer. The important thing to remember is that it is your celebration, your choice, your decisions that count.

We have two crematoria in Cornwall. One at Penmount, Polwheele, Truro, and the other at Glynn Valley, Bodmin. The staff of both crematoria are extremely helpful and accommodating. At Truro there are two chapels and there is one hour between funerals. The Trelawney chapel seats about 120, and at the Kernow chapel seats about 60. At Glyn Valley they have one Chapel, 45 minutes between ceremonies and there is seating for about 60. All of the chapels can accommodate an overflow. All the chapels have an organ, and facilities to play the the cassette tapes or CDs and boast a hearing-aid loop system The Trelawney chapel has a removable brass cross but, unfortunately, there is a 9 ft tall wooden cross bolted to the wall in at the Kernow chapel. The management, at our suggestion, explored and the viability and allocated funding to have a curtain to draw across the cross for non religious ceremonies, but somebody put a halt to that. There is a cross on the daiz at Glyn Valley but staff will cover that if requested.

For the ecologically inclined green burials are becoming quite popular, whereby you would be buried in a plot, and a tree planted on top. You could be laid to rest in a cardboard coffin, a wicker casket, or even a woolen shroud. I conducted such a ceremony for my friend Henry the Jug in which he was conveyed, in a cardboard coffin decorated by his daughters, on a horse-drawn cart, led by a jazz band. The jazz band played as he was lowered to his final resting place.

One such site is Rose Farm, Chyanhal, Buryas Bridge, in West Penwith. There is also another at Pont's Mill, Par, near St. Austell.

Of course, you can be burried in your back garden, but that can lead to all sorts of complications when the house is put up for sale.

Further sites of interest are;
The Natural Death Centre
Green Undertakings

For further information, or contact me