Can I have a natural burial during the Covid-19 crisis?

2nd June 2020#funerals
Can I have a natural burial during the Covid-19 crisis?

Yes, absolutely. What’s more, natural burial is the safest option for a funeral at the moment, because the burial event takes place outdoors with plenty of space for social distancing. Another major benefit is that they can be held in a way that focuses on the individual – away from regular funereal trappings.

Natural burials are one of the safest options for funerals at the moment. Because burials and funerals are outdoors natural burial grounds can provide the safest setting with social distancing held in a way that focuses on the individual.

​We don’t have to worry about sanitising our environment as families are not sharing pews but will often bring their own folding seats, picnic rugs or blankets which go back home when the ceremony has finished, which once again removes the concern about shared facilities.
Because we offer each funeral all the time and space it needs, regardless of how long the service is, there won’t be another funeral party waiting in the wings. Each family’s time at the burial meadow or woodland burial is truly their time. ​

​With current guidelines, the number of people who can attend is restricted by the government to make everything is as safe as possible. However, these smaller gatherings don’t have to affect how personal and special a green funeral or natural burial can be. Some of our families are even choosing to record the event or have a ‘zoom funeral’ or ‘Facebook funeral’ so that everyone can still be involved and watch the ceremony online. The great thing about smartphones is that they make many things possible.

For some families, an intimate funeral with close family is exactly what their loved one would have wanted. Though the usual venues for gatherings after funerals are closed, a few of our funerals have been followed by a simple picnic or takeaway pizza which has allowed families to stay together and have their own family celebration or version of a wake following the funeral service. The natural burial ground is the ideal setting for this if you want something simple, relaxed and special, where the immediate family can have a celebration of life.

While numbers are restricted, other families are choosing to have a small intimate funeral, followed by a memorial service at the natural burial ground at a later date to which extended family and friends will come.

Some families who have chosen cremation are planning to scatter or inter the ashes at a natural burial ground later on, perhaps on a birthday or special anniversary, when they can be with extended family and friends.

While other families have chosen to come directly to the natural burial ground for a simple, natural burial with just close family in attendance. This is the best option; staying away from the busy crematoria and being at peace in the countryside. These families too can organise a larger memorial service, perhaps with an officiant, at a later date when all their family and friends can attend. This can take place at the natural burial ground, a regular place of worship or a venue that holds some special meaning. The best thing is that you have options.

Another idea families are considering is having a wake or ‘party’ for family and friends when we can safely meet again with a celebration of life or funeral service at the wake itself. This could be in a marquee at the natural burial or at a venue because a funeral service or a memorial service can take place anywhere.

This is something you could perhaps discuss with a celebrant, local minister or officiant; they might be full of good suggestions that could inspire and help you. ‘Lockdown’ doesn’t have to confine the quality of the event you decide upon.

If you are thinking about having a natural burial and have any questions or ideas you may want to run past us give us a call, we are here to help.