Creamtion or Burial
Burial services can be a bit a little more expensive than a cremation but do have much less pressure on time.
The basic costs for a cremation or burial are usually fairly similar.
However, a significant in the cost for a burial will be the additional cost of the headstone. This can easily cost between £600-£1500 on average.
Many churchyards are now closed for new burials unless there is already a reserved or allocated space and most burials now take place in town cemeteries. When you purchase a burial plot, you will be required to pay for both the physical plot and the “exclusive rights of use” for a given period – usually 75 or 100 yrs, although this will vary by council authority.
You will also have to pay for the grave to be dug and prepared for the interment. In addition, there will be a Memorial or Headstone to plan for.
Most cemeteries also restrict burial rights to local parishioners, often increasing fees by double or triple if you don’t live within the local area.
A Woodland or Meadow burial is a thoughtful alternative.
A “green” funeral will ensure that the burial will have a minimal impact on the environment. The burial ground will be in a natural area and graves are often marked by trees rather than expensive headstones.
The coffin will be fully bio-degradable with no long term impact on the environment. Embalming is not permitted and in time, the burial ground will be allowed to revert to its natural meadow or woodland state.
In West Somerset’ we are blessed with a range of wonderful natural or woodland burial grounds in Old Cleeve, Somerton, Yeovil and others on Dartmoor & South Devon.
Cremations are usually less expensive than burials in town cemeteries. However, there a few key things to bear in mind.
Cremation Services are normally only available in 30-45 minute time slots. If you allow 5 minutes for everyone to enter and find their seats and 5 minutes to leave at the end of the service, the ceremony itself may be no more than 15-20 minutes and on a busy day you can sometimes feel a little rushed.
It may be worth considering booking a double period – the cost is usually only around 20% extra.
Clatworthy Resevoir on the Brendon Hills near Taunton or Durleigh Meadows near Bridgwater both offer wonderfully peaceful settings where a tree can be planted in memory of your loved one.
You can always hold a church service or a family memorial separately from the Cremation service, either on the same day or at another time if you wish.
You could alternatively hold your own private ceremony to scatter your loved one’s ashes in a place special to you or to them, to say your own farewell.
A beautiful and thoughtful alternative would be to inter your loved ones ashes in one of the several “Life for a Life” Memorial Forests that we have in Somerset.
The ashes can be interred at the time of planting and a plaque mounted by the tree can be added if you wish, as well as an entry in the Book of Remembrance.