How Covid-19 is Affecting Funerals

Last Updated 19th January 2022

Please be aware that our staff will wear masks at services and PPE when attending all deaths.

This page will be updated as new information is released, it is meant as a general summary of what is currently happening with all funerals. In the event that we are caring for a family whose loved one has passed away from Covid-19, we will speak to the family individually if any special measures are required, however there are no additional restrictions on the type of funeral available, and people are still able to come and see the deceased if wished.

We are following all government advice around attendance at funerals. If you are showing any Covid-19 symptoms, you should not attend. If you are self-isolating due to someone in your household having symptoms or testing positive, depending upon your relationship to the deceased, it may be possible to facilitate you attending the service, you should make any others attending aware of your situation, maintain social distancing at all times, wear a type IIR mask or superior, wash your hands or use hand gel regularly, and you must depart as soon as the service is over, attending a wake or ashes interment is not permitted in this circumstance.

It is recommended to take a lateral flow test before attending a funeral service.

We will discuss with each family individually what they would like to take place, although this is of course outside our control and will need to be amended if guidance changes.

From Thursday 27th January, the legal requirements for face coverings will be removed, however it will still be recommended to wear them in crowded places. Some venues may still request you wear them.

Funeral Arrangements

We are able to offer in person arrangements, by appointment only, at our premises, subject to existing self-isolation recommendations, face coverings are legally required, unless exempt. For those where this is not practical, or those who are not comfortable with this, we offer phone or video call appointments, paperwork can then be posted or emailed as necessary. We ask that all visits to our premises are done by appointment.

Limousine service is available as normal, with the following in place, please note that failure to adhere to these guidelines may result in a refusal of travel:

•    The divider between the driver and passengers (maximum of 6) will remain up at all times, no front seat passengers.
•    Between each use, the vehicle will be cleaned with an anti-viral fogging machine, proven to kill Covid-19.
•    The same driver will remain with the vehicle from leaving the garage until its return.
•    Drivers will wear a mask.

•    Passengers are legally required to wear a face covering, unless exempt.

•    It is not possible to carry passengers who are isolating, even when they are permitted to leave isolation for the funeral.

When discussing services with ministers/celebrants, some are happy to do this in person, others still prefer phone and video calls.

All Funeral Services

Funeral service attendance is no longer legally limited to a certain number, instead, each individual venue has to decide if they feel it necessary to set a limit.

Congregational singing is now permitted.

Where safe to do so, we will carry the coffin with up to 6 bearers. Families can choose to carry the coffin themselves if wished.

Webcasting/livestreaming may be available to open up the service to a anyone who is unable to attend, please see the livestreaming page for more information.

Churches

Churches are open for funerals.

 

Wearing a face covering is a legal requirement unless exempt.

Crematoria

Wearing a face covering is a legal requirement unless exempt.

York Crematorium is operating as normal.

Octon Crematorium is operating as normal.

 

There are options for services to take place elsewhere, both for religious and non-religious services, please contact us to discuss this.

Cemeteries

Attendance at burials is no longer legally limited. If you are using a chapel in a cemetery, wearing a face covering is a legal requirement unless exempt.

Florists

Most shops have now re-opened, you can also place online and telephone orders. We are able to accept orders as we normally would, and will fulfil them through our usual florists.

Service Sheets

Our printers are fully operational and we able to produce bespoke service sheets as normal. With reduced attendance, and no communal service books, it is currently very popular to have these, both for the service itself, and to send out as mementos for those who are unable to attend.

Reception Venues/Wakes

There is no longer any legal restrictions, though each venue may have its own rules that you are asked to follow.

Travelling to a Different Area

A funeral is a permitted reason to travel in all areas. If you are travelling from abroad and need advice, please contact us.

Attending a Death

Please be aware that whenever we attend a death now, whether at a house, or a care facility, we will be wearing personal protective equipment, minimising both any risk to our staff, but also to families and any other residents. All our staff attending deaths are being tested twice a week, and have received both of their vaccinations and booster.

Funeral Livestreaming

Most crematoria have livestreaming facilities available. We may also be able to provide livestreaming to funerals taking place elsewhere, such as Churches and Cemeteries. For full details, please see our livestreaming page.

Ashes Interments, Scatterings and Memorial Services (from 21st June 2021)

Like wakes, these are no longer legally limited, though venues may still ask you to follow their own rules. If you feel the time is right to have a service or event to remember the life of your loved one, please contact us and we can discuss your thoughts and wishes.

If you have any questions at all about arranging or attending a funeral, please do get in touch