The BBC’s documentary “Inside the Undertakers” with Stacey Dooley last Autumn was the latest behind-the-scenes programme to explore the funeral sector. Early on, Dooley confesses her fears surrounding death and sets out to confront the many myths and taboos associated with funerals.
But has this documentary really helped address doubts and fears faced by families on a daily basis?
For 40 minutes, viewers were taken into the heart of a busy Nottingham based funeral director with access to all areas. We followed bereaved families as they made arrangements for loved ones who had just died right through to the day of their funerals. Viewers met a lady who wanted to plan ahead for her own funeral, and shared conversations with drivers, florists, embalmers and funeral teams. The professional care and attention provided at all levels was abundantly clear as was Dooley’s changing attitude to death.
As a fifth generation family run business – very similar to the one in the BBC documentary – we’ve witnessed trends come and go. Research carried out decade after decade consistently points to death as being one of the most uncomfortable subjects for people to contemplate. We understand.
Yet we can testify to a culture where individuality is increasingly celebrated and the notion of tradition frequently challenged. Today’s funerals are arranged to truly reflect a life lived rather than a formula to be followed. And funeral professionals are increasingly supporting families to set out their wishes so when the inevitable happens, there’s a plan to follow.
In our view, the key take-away from this, and past documentaries, is that funeral professionals are best placed to take the lead in managing awkward conversations and break down the taboos one by one. It doesn’t really matter what your views are about death, or what kind of funeral you choose. It matters that you can get exactly what you want, from a team who will care for you and your loved one throughout.
The UK’s population is gradually coming to terms with the opportunities available to plan ahead – for themselves and those they love. And as funeral directors, we’re encouraging this dialogue by creating free resources to assist people get their affairs in order and to showcase a full range of possibilities. Most importantly, we want to bring peace of mind that the burden of decision making has been lifted from the family left behind.
You don’t need to be Stacey Dooley to visit one of our branches or meet the professionals who are the most equipped to answer questions or help tackle the many myths that surround death.
- Visit us on one of our open days – whether that’s during a community lights-on/gala event or an official Doors Open day, or a charity/community coffee morning.
- Take a virtual tour online to our Reach Us page.
- Download or ask us for free planning resources – Thinking Ahead.
- We can even come to your home and have a chat with you and your loved ones to set minds at ease.
We’re here for you when, and however, you want to find out more.