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The unusual ones

I hope a lot of the information you find on this site will indicate to you that a funeral is a very personal thing and you should feel confident about doing it your way.

There are, of course, many, many services which run along traditional lines and if that’s what people want then I’m fine with it. However, I’ve collected a few of my more ‘unusual’ experiences below, so you can get a picture of just how different and, more importantly, personal, you can make it.

Many occasions when people have brought the dead person’s dog into the chapel, to say a final farewell.

Coffins adorned with the Union Jack, a patchwork blanket made by the deceased, football flags.

Wellington boots on the coffin, a camera, a replica of the World Cup, model Buddha, fishing tackle, full china tea set.

Flowers in every design imaginable, football team’s badges, pints of bitter, a packet of rolling tobacco, red stiletto shoe, an ocean liner, a pink frog.

Music choices that might surprise you. An 81 year old who had three songs by Lady Gaga. Coming in to ‘Stairway to Heaven’, going out to ‘Highway to Hell’, the coffin lowered to ‘Going Underground’ by the Jam, Kung-Fu Fighting, The Ying-Tong Song, theme from The Muppets, theme from Horse of the year show, theme from Top Gun.

A man who asked the mourners to stand and give his mum a round of applause.

A man who said farewell to a friend by leaving a mars bar on his coffin as he finished the eulogy.

The commentary of The Cheltenham Gold cup played during the service.

A saxophonist playing live.

Many people reading poetry they’d written for the occasion.

A mexican wave.

People dancing (on one occasion, The Macarena; on another ‘The Time Warp’ while standing on the pews).


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