M&S Funerals were muted in 2010 and fear ran through the UK funeral industry. All the Funeral Directors thought how on earth would they compete with the M&S quality and service?
Aldi priced funerals sounds even better! That’s what Express-Cremations are offering nationally
You receive no-frills but great value for money and quality – imagine Cremation from £999.00 and if you choose, Green Burials can be fulfilled from £1,495.00 nationally.
Express offer Cremations throughout the UK. These are funerals without a funeral where those who book in advance or those family and friends left behind who choose to send the deceased for cremation and either choose to have no service at all or hold a gathering at a more suitable time in an evening or weekend when all the family and friends can get together perhaps to even include the children.
Gordon Tulley of Express explains; “This is not for everyone but we are amazed at the up-take, we started by fulfilling the wishes of a Doncaster family whose husband’s initial wish was to gift his body to science but when his time came Sheffield Hospital were unable to fulfil his wish so his family chose an Express- Burial where the husband was simply and Respectfully laid to rest in Respect Green Burial Park in South Yorkshire with no family or friends attending. The wife and daughter were so satisfied with the way everything was handled they both then pre booked their own two burial plots alongside him and have Expressly wished to be buried in the same way with little or no fuss”.
Alison Finch the sextant and administrator explained “we don’t question or ever judge our customers who choose Express services but we find an amazing array of reasons why people choose Express-funerals. We have a doctor who chose to send a distant Aunt for direct burial as due to their transient lifestyles he had no connection with her. Solicitors who are left as executors who also wanted the cremated remains of his former client’s cats to be laid to rest with her, through to those seeking the least cost option as they are facing funeral poverty and just simply don’t want to get into debt. We often receive calls from relatives left behind who are either ill with the Bi-Polar disorders or acute agoraphobia and simply can’t face the stress of a funeral”
We also have some customers who state, “he just wanted a simple cremation / burial no fuss, no fancy cars, no wasting of money on the pomp and ceremony to impress the neighbours. His wife stated, “he was ill for such a long time and all those relatives never bothered to come and see him so why should he pay for a funeral just so they can gather at his expense”. We have one daughter who called this week who stated “We would rather give a big cheque to the Hospice than have a funeral as I’m just too stressed to organise a funeral for a group of 95 year-olds and so we will have a lovely memorial luncheon in moms favourite hotel just as she wanted”
Some of the other widely differing reasons people choose Express cremations
- They are the last remaining person with no relatives
- The deceased was well into their ‘90s and all friends and near relatives had passed away
- The deceased and immediate family are all none religious
- Some people believe the body is just a body once the spirit has left
- Some people find Funeral Directors charge extortionately high fees for services & products
- Simply want a reasonably priced funeral.
Compared to traditional cremation/ burial, the process is more flexible – far flung families who need not gather immediately to bury a relative have more time to plan memorial services perhaps in a nicer setting such as the deceased favourite place to visit or dine.
An immediate, no-frills cremation is much less expensive than a full-service funeral: £999.00 on average, compared to £3,590 according to the National Funeral Directors Association.
Some funeral sceptics say. “Funerals seem to be all about show. They are certainly for the living, not the dead. My father always hated spending money on anything at all and he would turn in his grave if he knew money was wasted on expensive men in black and someone reciting about him who never knew him”!
Then you hear those who say I have instructed my daughter to dispose of my body as cheaply as possible. She can then get sozzled and cry a bit if she must. But they must wonder will she? The only way to fix that is to pre-book your final repose.
Many of our customers have actually booked in advance to fix the cost at today’s prices, “With a funeral plan you get to decide on what you want rather than get what your relatives think you want at the time.”
The baby boomer generation who are now attending more funerals than most, want the freedom of choice. In times of grief they may not know exactly what they want, but we do know, they want options and they want alternatives, particularly around something as sensitive as this.
Express explain; “an unquestioning, none judgmental compassionate and professional reception to each caller can make this most difficult of times just that little bit more bearable”.
How do Express-Cremations afford to offer funerals at this price? The owners of Express Cremations own over 25,000 fully approved Green Burial plots and have options on double that amount so they are certainly prepared for business, they even manufacture their own Bamboo Shrouds called Respect EveryBody Shrouds for Cremation and Burial and all their cremations are completed in fully licensed crematoriums and of course they are individual cremations as per UK law.
Last year 4,100 people were sent to their final repose without any family or friends attending, this figure up from 3,800 in 2012 and this year it is growing with Express-Burials leading the way with Express-Cremations proving to be a very popular choice.
With an increase of 50% in those in the funeral poverty trap since 2010, 54% of those received £1,225.00 meaning now this Express service offers choice and a lot less burden on the family bank accounts, that’s why the DHSS & Hospitals and Councils are using these services too when they have to fund funerals.
The funeral business is worth around £2bn annually to the UK economy with some 580,000 deaths annually and despite falls in the death rate in recent years, it’s an expanding sector and Express-Cremation is just one part of the change happening in this age old profession.
The latest market reports show the worrying future cost of dying;
Sun Life have published their Cost of Dying Report revealing that the cost of dying (including death-related costs such as probate, headstones and flowers, in addition to the basic cost of a funeral) has risen by 10.6% – seven times the rise in inflation– to £8,427, one of the fastest rises in the report’s history.
The funeral cost (accounting for less than half the total cost of dying) has also risen sharply at more than twice the rate of inflation to £3,590 (a rise of 3.9% since 2013 and a staggering 87% higher than in Sun Life’s first survey in 2004).
You can read more about this including an infographic & the full report in PDF form here:
Can you afford to die? Cost of dying rises sunlifedirect.co.uk
Sun Life’s 2014 Cost of Dying report finds funeral costs are up 87% since 2004 with no sign of things slowing down. See our infographic to find out more.
Sources of information and credit due
*SunLife Cost of Dying Survey July 2014
**Co-operative Funeralcare research
***Source: Average of quotes for standard funeral arrangements from a sample of funeral directors. YouGov, July 2014.
****Mintels Funeral Planning Report 2014
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