It can be a daunting experience when making arrangements for a funeral, especially if you have not done this before.
We have created this page to give you an idea of what to expect when making funeral arrangements, what decisions will need to be made, and the available choices.
As always, you can contact us at any time for our complimentary, no-obligation consultation service for funeral arrangements in Gosport, Fareham, Portsmouth & beyond on 01329600050, or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
At our initial meeting, which can be in our office, Elkin & Bell Funeral Directors Gosport, 186 Nobes Avenue, Bridgemary Po13 0HY or the comfort of your own home, you will meet with either Richard or Hayley, who will work with you for the entirety of the arrangements and be in attendance on the day of the funeral.
We pride ourselves in our family-led approach with traditional values; we can help empower you to share your vision for the funeral service with us. Supporting families in Gosport, Fareham, Portsmouth and the surrounding areas.
Firstly, we will discuss the person who has died, whether the funeral is a burial or cremation and if you would like a separate service held before the committal.
If a funeral plan is in place, the person who has died or their executor may have previously made some decisions regarding the funeral service.
We have official documentation that needs to be completed and signed by the person responsible for the arrangements; as such, we will need to obtain legal information regarding the person who has died and the person responsible for the arrangements.
We can make all of the arrangements during our initial meeting; however, if you prefer to take some notes to discuss with family members and make a follow-up appointment, we are happy to work at a speed you are comfortable with.
As well as the type of funeral service, we will ask whether you would like to visit the person who has died in our private chapel of rest, what kind of clothing you would like them to be wearing and if there are any personal items* or jewellery* that you would like to have returned to you or to remain with them.
*For cremation, we cannot recover personal items or jewellery after the cremation has occurred; we recommend having these items returned to you if you are unsure.
There are many different options available for a funeral service.
First and foremost, we will need to know whether the committal will be a burial or cremation, as different legal documents will need to be completed. If the choice is cremation, we will ask which crematoria you would like the committal to be held; the most local crematorium is in Portchester, Fareham; however, unless you choose our unattended cremation option, you have the final say.
If a burial is chosen, we will need to know the name of the cemetery, whether there is an existing grave and the details of the last person who was interred (buried) or if you would like us to arrange for a new plot, we will also ask you if the person who has died is a resident of the area where the cemetery is located and if there is a monument (headstone) in place.
Once these decisions have been made, we will discuss the service itself, whether a service is required, if you would like it to be held at the place of committal (cemetery/crematoria), in a church or other place of worship, or at an alternative venue.
If the service is to be held at the cemetery/crematoria, we will discuss the type of officiant you would like to lead the service. We work closely with different officiants; whether you require a religious minister, a non-religious humanist, or a celebrant, we will make recommendations based on our experience. Remember, you do not have to hold a service at all, or you can take the service yourself or ask a family member/friend to do this on your behalf.
Although we are Funeral Directors based in Gosport, we are able to help with arrangements in Portsmouth and the whole of the UK
Bespoke Choices: Our core funeral packages include everything you need for a simple funeral service. There are several changes that you can make if you wish; some of these include: Vehicle Choices Whether you would like to add a family car with seating for up to six people or choose one of our alternative hearses, you can even specify a certain route for the cortège to travel. Coffin Upgrades We have many options for you to choose from: traditional wooden coffins, environmentally friendly options, bespoke pictures, or glitter coffins.
Music is something that can be very important to celebrate the life of a person; it may be the case that certain pieces have already been chosen or mentioned, but if you have to choose pieces from scratch, we have some points you should take into consideration:
If the funeral service is being held in a church or other place of worship, it is always a good idea to discuss music choices first with the religious leader, as there may be certain restrictions in place. If the service is being held in a cemetery/crematoria/another venue, there will usually be no restrictions on the type of music you can play.
Typically, we suggest three pieces of music, one as you are entering/as the coffin is carried into position, one during the service, either a hymn or a reflection piece, and finally, one as you take your leave after the service.
In some instances, you may want to have more or fewer music pieces played, which we can discuss in full. You do not have to provide us with CDs; we can do this for you or, at some venues, order this online.
We can source various musicians if you prefer, from organists, bagpipers or buglers; we are happy to discuss any requirements. As funeral directors specialising in arrangements in Gosport, Fareham, Portsmouth and beyond, we can help you with any and all music arrangements.
We have included some further ideas for you to consider, but we will work with you to create a truly meaningful farewell if you have a vision of your own.
Floral Tributes: If you would like to use your own florist to arrange your floral tributes, you are more than welcome to - the florist will ask you the funeral directors name, the name of the person who has died and the date and time of the funeral service so they can be delivered in good time. If you are creating your own tributes, we ask that they are delivered to our office two clear hours before the time of the service. We work closely with local florists in Gosport, Fareham and Portsmouth; we are happy to provide their details so you can approach them or place the order on your behalf and place them onto the final account.
Charitable Donations: If it has been decided that there are to be no floral tributes or family flowers only, we can receive and collate charitable donations in memory of the person who has died. We can set up a complimentary online donations page that you can share with family, friends and colleagues. Online donations are collated and sent directly to the charity.
Alternatively, we can accept cheques made payable to the charity.
We will collate these cheques 4-6 weeks after the funeral date; we will provide you with a list of names* of the donators and the final amount raised and ask the charity to send you a receipt.
*We will only provide names as shown in covering letters or on cheques; due to GDPR, we cannot pass on any personal data, e.g. addresses or telephone numbers. Likewise, if we are asked to provide your details for a condolence card to be sent, we will instead offer to forward this to you on the person's behalf.
You are welcome to design and produce your own service sheets; however, we offer a full design service; we recommend that you meet with and obtain a running order from the officiant before you proceed with printing any service sheets.
These can be designed with a certain theme in mind and include poems and photographs.
At certain venues*, there are facilities to show a Visual Life Tribute. We would typically play this during the time of reflection along with the chosen piece of music for around 2-3 minutes. Alternatively, you can have photographs flipping through the entirety of the service (without music) or, you can have one static photograph showing (known as a holding picture) Whatever you decide, we can create the Visual Life Tribute for you; however, if you would like to create your own, there are certain requirements that we will discuss with you in full.
*Certain venues refer to crematoria chapels. Other venues may accommodate a Visual Life Tribute; alternatively, we can create visual life tributes to be played at the reception following the service.
There are so many different poems and readings that you can specifically use at funeral services; however, you are welcome to create your own tributes or poems, which you can either read during the service or have the officiant read on your behalf.
It may be that there are family members or friends who are unable to attend the service as they live abroad or are unable to travel; we can facilitate live-streaming.
Certain venues have this already in place; however, alternative options are available at other venues that currently do not have these facilities.
Our commitment to you does not end once the funeral service has been held; we are here for you for as long as you need us to be.
We are also able to help you with some of the following:
Contact Elkin & Bell Funeral Directors Gosport for more information about the services we can provide
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