Covid19

WELCOME - our latest advice on COVID-19, updated 2nd July 2021

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Restrictions put in place by government are still in place until 19th July when we hope to hear some good news. We continue to make sure we have the latest information and are taking the right precautions, so please speak to us if you are unsure.


Attendance is based on a risk assessment at each venue, see below. Wakes are available and are subject to the same attendance limits based on risk assessments from each venue.


Please stay safe.


We have taken as many measures as practical to ensure our current working practices are as hygienic as possible: some staff are working from home, we regularly clean down all surfaces in the office, chapel of rest and mortuary and have hand-sanitizer and hand washing facilities available for frequent use. 


We request that you do not come to the office, and request that instead, you telephone or email. If you plan to come to the office we ask that you maintain social distancing, wear a mask and we will do the same.


If you have any of the Coronavirus symptoms you should try not to attend a funeral service.  Please let us know if this is difficult for you.


If you are concerned about anything related to COVID-19 or the service we offer, please contact us by telephone on (01453) 54 27 54 or email.

COLLECTING SOMEONE WHO HAS DIED AT HOME


We will continue to do our job as respectfully as possible but we need to take a few extra precautions during this time, even if the person's death was not caused by COVID-19. We want to protect you from our presence in your home. We will take a few extra precautions while we are in your home:

  • we will not attempt to shakehands and prefer to remain a safe distance away
  • we will encourage you to stay a safe distance away while we do our work
  • we will indicate that we have finished, again at a safe distance
  • you may find that we wear Personal Protective Equipment, including masks, for slightly longer than usual

In this way we hope to protect you and also our staff.

Making arrangements for the funeral

We are happy to discuss your funeral requirements with you over the phone, or via video-call or even email, or in person, either at your location or in our office. We will attempt to make any visit as safe as possible for both you and our staff.


Ministers and celebrants will be happy to speak to you, again, over the phone or video-call and some may now do home visits.


Registration of the death can still be done over the phone so there is no need to attend the Register Office. The Certifying Doctor can email the Medical Cause of Detah Certificate to the Registrar and paperwork will be emailed to the Funeral Director and certificates posted to you.


The "second doctor" normally required for cremation is not needed at the present. The first doctor can email their paperwork to the Funeral Director.


Other official paperwork required for cremation or burial, or by us, can be emailed to customers and back to the Funeral Director if required.

Coming to see your loved one in the Chapel of Rest

We recognise that with the special circumstances that we face, coming to see your loved one may be very important to you. We want to help you in this as much as possible. In order to protect you and our staff we will still need to exercise social distancing during these times - our chapel of rest is small and so this will be tricky. We will only be able to guide you in and we will not be able to stay with you for any length of time. We may only be able to offer you restricted access as we will limit the numbers of viewings that we can accommodate during a day. We will also be monitoring this situation and we will keep this policy under review.

WHAT THE FUNERAL SERVICE MIGHT BE LIKE

GET IN TOUCH WITH FRIENDS


Hearing from friends and relatives is an important part of funerals and missing out on the gathering is a distinct disadvantage. It is therefore important to make use of the technology we have to keep in touch with family and friends. You can arrange a group call, if you have these facilities, or speak to people individually.

We can help publish the ways in which you would like to be contacted and will try and will try and encourage the general public to be active in contacting people in the absence of a funeral service. 

WEBCAST


All of the local crematoria (Gloucester, Westerleigh, Cheltenham, Bath) have facilities to show the service being conducted on a computer via the Internet. During these times this service is being offered at cost and so will only cost around £30. The cost of the cremation is also likely to be cheaper if no-one is allowed to attend. 

It might be possible for the minister/celebrant to take a service which you can see from the comfort of your own home.

At this time, due to the increase in demand for this facility, the companies that provide these services cannot guarantee that the webcast will be available but they assure us that they are doing all they can to minimise any disruption.

ONLINE CONTENT


We can publish a written, "paper" funeral service on our website that has been created by a minister/celebrant. We can include photos and music and people can be invited to read the service either at a specific time or at a later date.

This is suitable for a burial, or if a webcast is not available or in addition to a live broadcast.


The above is an example but we can tailor this to your own individual requirement.

According to the latest Government rules funerals are still subject to some restrictions such as social distancing, hand-sanitising, and limits on attendance according to the space available at each venue. You must follow the guidance of your venue and Funeral Director who are trying to keep everyone safe.


Current attendance allowances:









It is often possible to setup a life-stream of the service over the internet, via YouTube (live), or Zoom or special Webcast services provided by some crematoria (both Gloucester and Westerleigh have these facilities - provided by a third-party: Obitus). We will be happy to help with arranging for this, see below.


Wakes must be organised as seated events (when your are permitted to remove your mask). Tables must seat a maximum of 6 people. Food will be brought to your table (no buffets). If you leave your table you must wear a mask, continue to follow social distancing guidelines and any one-way route implemented by the venue. 




Despite the limitations placed on the funeral service there are many different ways to be creative:

Up to 45

Afternoon tea only, up to 30

Westerleigh Crematorium, Waterside chapel

Up to 40

Wake facilities up to 30 subject to availability

Westerleigh Crematorium, Woodland chapel

Up to 15

Wake facilities up to 30 subject to availability

St Bartholomew's Church, Lower Cam

Up to 50

Wakes possible in church, enquire for more details

What you can do if you would have gone to the funeral...

A funeral is where we gather to share our love for someone we have lost and those who are grieving. A place to make that love public and for some a place to pray for the deceased, the mourners and bereaved. WE CAN STILL DO THIS FOR THOSE WE HAVE LOST.  We can still tell the world we loved them, we just need to be creative.


Here are some ideas of what you can do if you would have attended a funeral which is no longer able to happen. We would love to hear more of you ideas which you can share with us by email, Facebook, or any other means you can think of.


  • Share our memories of someone with the immediate family. A simple sentence like “Your Mum had the most lovely smile and was always kind to me.” is simple but means the world when emailed, said on the phone, texted or posted on a postcard.
  • Make use of technology for group meetings such as the Facebook, ZOOM app, WhatsApp or whatever apps you are familiar with.
  • You could ring people on the designated day and share stories.
  • Children could draw pictures for the deceased and you could post them on-line or scan and post them to folk who don’t use digital communication.
  • Look out for memorial services that happen in the future. We will have a memorial service for everyone caught up in this situation in the Memorial Hall in Cam and there will be others organised by religious groups too.
  • Light a candle to help you focus on thinking about that person.
  • Listen to music that is either special to you or special to them.
  • Look out for information from the Funeral Director or family about how to join in remembering someone - most information will come online.

After COVID-19

When the threat of Coronavirus has diminished we will be offering memorial services to those that would like them, either religious or non-religious. We will also be providing a special non-religious memorial service in Cam Memorial Hall to remember all those who have died during these times and whose families and friends have not been able to attend a service. More details about this will follow nearer the time.