Before a cremation can take place, three statutory forms have to be completed; one by next of kin, the others by two different doctors. Each of the doctors is entitled to a fee. One will be the doctor who has attended the person in their last illness who must see the body before completing the form, and another doctor who must also see the body. When a coroner has issued a certificate for cremation, no other doctors are required to certify, and the coroner’s certificate is free. A final document is signed by another doctor, who is the medical referee to the crematorium. They must receive the above certificates up to two days before the cremation is due to take place. The fee for this usually comes as part of the crematorium fee.

Most crematoria incorporate a service chapel. You may wish to use this if you don’t want to hold the service itself in a church or other location. Or you may choose to use the crematorium for committal only.

You may wish to consider music to be played. Commonly, crematoria provide one or more of the following:

  • Pre-recorded music from which you can choose.
  • A cassette or CD player on which you can play music of your choice.
  • An organist.

Many crematoria include scattering or burying the ashes in a garden of remembrance in their fee. If a relative wants to collect the ashes, they can be collected or sent, but they will only be kept free for a time (usually about a month) – a charge will be made after that time. Some churches are happy to scatter the ashes in the graveyard or bury them according to the family’s wishes.

If the death was expected, contact the doctor who attended the deceased during their final illness. If the death occurred at a Nursing Home, the staff will contact the doctor.

If the doctor can certify the cause of death you will be given:

  • A Medical Certificate that shows the cause of death (this will be in a sealed envelope, addressed to the registrar).
  • A Formal Notice which states that the doctor has signed the Medical Certificate and tells you how to register the death.

For advice, contact us as soon as possible.