Unique tribute ceremony for an iconic community building

Cheers for Hornsey Town Hall, an iconic community building in the heart of Crouch End that is closing its doors for redevelopment. Screenshot from video by Sugarsweet Productions The vast majority of the ceremonies I lead are for people: babies who are given a warm welcome into the world; couples who commit their love to[…]

How to include young children in funerals

“I am not sure if I should take my children to the funeral. What do you think?” It’s a question parents often ask me as a funeral celebrant. If prepared well, attending a funeral can be a healthy, healing and positive experience for children. The following feedback from a parent explains how attending a funeral has helped[…]

Why we need to rethink funeral spaces

Funeral at Willow Row Barrow, Cambridgeshire   On a chilly but bright autumn morning, the family and friends of David Sinclair gathered to both celebrate his life and acknowledge his death at the place he had chosen as his final resting place, Willow Row Barrow, in the Cambridgeshire countryside. It was the first time that a[…]

The future of funerals: what the UK funeral industry can learn from the Dutch

A few weeks ago, I went on a funeral field trip to The Netherlands. I was curious to learn more about the funeral practices in my home country. The Dutch are well known for the relaxed, personal and innovative way of dealing with their dead. What can de UK funeral world learn from their neighbours?[…]

Training: Grief Foundations for Funeral Professionals

*NEW DATE: Sat 20th October 2018, 10am-1pm, Portsoken House, 155-157 Minories, EC3N 1LJ, London. More info: rosalie@ritualstoday.co.uk Caroline Lloyd (aka The Grief Geek) and I have developed the training ‘Grief foundations for funeral professionals’. In this training you will learn what grief is and how to support the bereaved. The training offers a mix of theory, interactive discussions and exercises. The[…]

Start 2017 Positively With This Year-End Ritual

We are approaching the end of 2016. It has been a turbulent year. How do you look back on 2016? What are the things you would like to leave behind? What would you like to take with you in the year to come? These questions came to my mind when I was browsing through the pictures[…]

Funerals: how to select the right music (and avoid the Top 10 Funeral Hits)

  What music would you like to have played at your funeral? One of your favourite songs? A traditional hymn? Should it be sombre, or rather uplifting and cheerful? Not many people plan their funeral and in our society it’s not something we usually discuss over a cuppa or a pint of beer. Which is[…]

Good Funeral Awards 2016. Death, Oscars and Two Important Questions.

Thursday, 8th September I will be attending the biggest party in the funeral world. At a glamorous lunch in London, a diverse bunch of people will be celebrating outstanding and innovative initiatives in the world of death and dying. One of the most exciting parts of the event is the announcement of the winners of the Good Funeral Awards[…]

The tree of life: a baby naming ceremony inspired by nature

Baby naming ceremonies are always wonderful to do. They are usually informal occasions full of happiness and love. Very often, other children attend the ceremony, sharing their bubbling energy and sometimes causing a bit of chaos when they decide to do their own thing. These children keep reminding me of the fact that good preparation[…]

Seven Blessings: a modern interpretation of a beautiful Jewish ritual

One of the most precious things of being a celebrant is learning a lot about the richness of rituals and ceremonies from all over the world. As an independent celebrant, I deliver ceremonies for people from all kinds of backgrounds: secular, religious and interfaith. My starting point is always with the people I meet and[…]

I do! How a celebrant can help you realise the day of your dreams

Preparing your wedding can be an extremely stressful experience. For almost one in four men (23%), it’s the most stressful thing they have ever done, compared to one in six women (16%). There is a whole list of things to decide on. What venue? Who to invite? How to make sure that everybody is going[…]