A more detailed look at our charges and what they mean.
Traditional Service Funeral Charges
I appreciate that this may not be the time that many of you will want to have to trawl through details of funeral charges. However price transparency is important. Hopefully you will be able to compare our service with that of others providing a similar standard of service.
Please collect your thoughts. Take your time. And have a look below. If it is just too much, please call and we can talk about it instead!
If you do feel like comparing funeral charges, you may be assured that we do not hide any charges. Many will not be as open.
And as always, only select a member of the NAFD and call them for free help and assistance.
We start with our Professional fees
This includes quite a lot of funeral charges that other providers will not include in their fee. Please have a read through and then compare our prices. At first glance our professional fee will look higher than some. But we won’t charge you for the following services which some funeral providers will:
We do not charge you for the following:
- £50 to go and collect the cremated remains from the crematorium
- £10 per month to store them for you
- £200 plus to hold the service in a place of worship, hotel venue or your own back garden
- additional charges if your service inadvertently runs on a little longer than anticipated.
Altogether not having to pay extra for these items could save you many hundreds of pounds.
We do not offer packages. It is an utterly awful concept. Nobody was born in a package, so please don’t accept these when someone has died.
1 Our professional fee includes:
Taking your instructions
Sitting with you to take your instructions, either at your house or at any of our offices (Covid restrictions permitting). We will take a detailed record of the funeral wishes you have or, even better, as left by the deceased. This discussion can easily take two hours or be held over a couple of days.
Finding a suitable venue and officiant
We speak with you about the needs of the wider family including a suitable venue for the service and the Committal including the date and time. We then contact your chosen Minister or Officiant for the service. We give consideration to the number of mourners attending, including seating and distancing. Also we will cover the use of current technology to help include those who are unable to attend for any reason.
Musical content, eulogy and readings
There will be quite a long discussion about musical content, hymns and any readings. Also we will discuss the eulogy to be given and who might be the best person to deliver this. We will help with rehearsal options including at the venue itself, and we will be present to guide and encourage the speaker. Also, we have suitable support material we can give you.
We will take time to discuss the variety of coffin options that are available these days from the very elaborate solid oak caskets to the very beautiful woven willow coffin from the Somerset levels. On the other hand we will happily discuss all options from woollen to cardboard coffins. We do not (and never have) paid the funeral arranger any commission for selling you an expensive coffin option. Many funeral providers will do this and it greatly affects you funeral charges.
We do however suggest that you select the first coffin in our range. We have always done this! It is perfectly excellent (and of a higher standard than many other funeral providers offer as the first option) and there is no reason to look further.
Choice of transport affects funeral charges
Again a long discussion will take place about the requirements for transport on the day of the funeral. Whether we commence from your home, that of the deceased, or even if we start from our premises. Your vehicles or ours. All options are open for discussion and variable even on the day of the service in some cases. If you select a horse drawn hearse we will explain the cost implications of this. If you select to use one of our funeral ambulances, we will explain the cost saving too.
All administration handled by us and you choose the date and time!
We will attend to all the administrative requirements relating to the type of funeral selected. We will assist the family with appointments at the hospital or registrar if required and if necessary. We will arrange the time and day at the church and churchyard, cemetery or crematorium or any combination thereof. we ensure your selected Minister or Celebrant is available and booked. We will then confirm these arrangements in writing to all parties.
Unless we are committed to a funeral previously, you get the choice of the day and time for the service. Please beware that some funeral providers will not give you this choice. You will have to fit in with them, and by this point in the arrangements it may be difficult to extricate yourselves from the awful situation.
Visiting your loved one
We will take time to discuss the delicate issue of visiting the deceased in the chapel of rest including the clothes you would like us to dress your loved one in and when you would like to visit. Also we will discuss what you should expect when you visit such as whether the coffin should be open or closed. It is entirely up to you but possibly it should be closed first so that you can settle yourself in the chapel. Then return a few minutes later when the coffin has already been opened so that you can now place flowers and letters inside if you wish. This is a very delicate part of the interview which will not be rushed.
Help with the reception venue
We will take instructions to reserve space at your reception venue, restrictions permitting of course. We have a wide range of experience with the many reception venues that are available and we can help with suggestions. And just so that you know, we do not accept commission from these venues.
Usher service included free of charge
We provide a free-of-charge service with a dedicated usher arriving early at the church or crematorium, to look after your mourners as they arrive, who may be unsure about where to go, which chapel the service will be in or anxious about what they should be doing. The usher is on hand to help and assist your mourners at a distressing time.
The usher will also ensure everything is set up exactly as you wish. This includes checking the music selection, placing the printed Order of Service on your seats where appropriate and will be on hand to collect charitable donations in lieu of flowers for your chosen charity, after the service, and all without affecting your funeral charges.
The Usher is also able to pre-seat the mourners in the chapel, if this is part of your requirement, to ensure they are comfortable. This ensures the arrival of the funeral cortege is calm and as stress-free as possible for the close family at a time of deep distress.
Arranging for the final resting place of cremated remains
If the funeral is a cremation, we will talk about the many options available at the crematorium, and other venues, for the final placement of the cremated remains. We will make arrangements for the final resting place of the cremated remains at any time without further charge. This is not an option with other funeral providers. If there is a charge from a third party, this you will pay, but nothing further to us unless you would like us to join you on the day.
Regular progress updates, without affecting funeral charges
We are available to you for any consultation at any time between first contact and the funeral itself. We will call you to check on your progress with selecting clothing or music. And to be sure you have ordered your flowers and booked your reception. You can drop in at any time to discuss the arrangements (though it might be helpful to call ahead), or just to talk. It really does help.
The Funeral Director will almost always be the person who sits with you to make the arrangements for the funeral. This is very unlikely to be the case with other funeral providers and the significance of this is hard to over state. You simply cannot get the same level of connection or support from a complete stranger knocking at your door on that day, when compared to meeting a familiar face who has been there with you throughout. And the reverse is also true. It is impossible to provide the highest level of service to you if our Funeral Director has never met you.
No matter how nicely the service is arranged we need a connection or continuity. After over 40 years in this profession I can say without fear, that this is one of the most significant differences between the high standard of service we provide and, and that which you will receive from other funeral providers.
We will provide at least five members of staff to handle the coffin, while our Funeral Director oversees everything and is free to be on hand to you at all times. I have watched funerals for many many years and nobody else offers this level of service within their normal professional fee. Some funeral providers also do not carry the coffin any more. Health & Safety issues are sited as causing them to use wheels!!!
Our professional fee is £1900.00
And should you be a returning client, no matter how long ago, there is a reduction of £100. Returning clients are highly valued by this company!
2 Collection of the deceased person
When I started over 40 years ago in the family funeral business, it was only me and my dad available to go out! How things have changed. 40 years ago we did use the family estate car for this (something that I think is completely unacceptable these days and hopefully so do you)
During office hours your individual office will handle all your requirements, including arranging the collection of your loved one. We travel to either your home or the hospital in a professionally equipped and fitted deceased person removal ambulance.
Outside of office hours we have a fully staffed 24 hour telephone service. Whichever of the three offices that you call, an experienced member of staff will answer your call and discuss the collection of the deceased person. This is not an “out of company” call centre! You speak to us!
One of these Ambulances has since been replaced with a new vehicle. When I started these had not been invented! What a change, and these days they are absolutely the minimum standard you should accept.
During office hours our charge to collect your loved one is £200.00
Outside of office hours our charge to collect your loved one is £300.00
If you ask us to go further afield we charge £1.50/mile after the first 100 miles.
3 Selection of suitable coffin or casket
All my funeral directing friends are going to have a sharp intake a breath now. Just pick the first one!
Here is a picture of the standard coffin we will “encourage” you to select. We call it the Chiltern oak. It is the first one.
Our charge for the Chiltern oak coffin selection £525.00
We do have many others from this simple but real oak veneer to the elaborate Colourful Coffin selections that are available bespoke to your loved ones life and loves. Click the button to go to our coffin selection pages.
The above is a creation by Colourful Coffins and we supply these too, however they are a little more expensive as are willow coffins from the Somerset levels.
4 Vehicles required
Funeral service vehicles represent different things to different people. Please don’t get carried away with your requirements.
We start with the hearse and possibly a limousine as shown here at the Chatham or Strood office.
Hearse, if you select to use it, is £325.00
Limousine, when families prefer not to use their own cars, is £275.00 (seat six)
Saloon car, matching the above, in case there are only two of you, is £100.00 (seat three)
Our charge for the mobility assistance car £0.00 (no charge when at least one mourner accompanies a mobility chair user)
You can of course use your own vehicles for the duties required. A reasonable size estate car can be used (and has been in the past!) to transport the coffin.
5 An example of how to calculate our funeral charges
|Collection of the deceased||200.00 (from)|
|Coffin selection (Chiltern oak)||525.00|
|Total of our charges||2950.00 (from)|