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‘Destination’ funerals take off

Britons are increasingly requesting a ‘destination funeral’, according to a survey.

The first in a series of reports from for The Co-operative Funeralcare on funeral trends reveals that, in the last 12 months, almost half its funeral directors have arranged a funeral service outside a traditional setting such as a church or crematorium, and nearly two fifths of consumers say they would consider an alternative location for their own farewell.

The report also shows a trend towards a celebratory tone, with colourful clothing, and non-typical transport. Two thirds of those surveyed said funerals were becoming more of a celebration of life and almost half would like their own funeral to be conducted this way.

A quarter of those surveyed would considers a lake or river for their funeral, a fifth might opt for the countryside or at sea, while one in six might choose a service at home or in the garden.

Requests for alternative locations are becoming more common, led by the home or garden of the deceased, and followed by an overseas location; a sports venue; a local beauty spot, park or tourist attraction or the deceased’s workplace.

The move towards a celebration is evident from post-service arrangements, with a third preferring a party instead of a wake. A pub was the most popular for a wake, followed by a seaside setting or a boat.

There is a clear shift away from sombre clothing too, with 25% of respondents asking guests to eschew black. Nearly half the Funeralcare funeral directors have arranged services where the congregation wore clothing of significance to the deceased, such as fancy dress or football shirts.

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