Category Archives: pure cremation

pure cremation

Cutting Funeral Costs

Pure Cremation Comments on Funeral Habits and their Cost.

Continually increasing funeral costs and funeral poverty have once again dominated this year’s Royal London National Funeral Cost Index with the average cost of a funeral rising yet again faster than normal inflation.

OK, it is only marginally above the rate of inflation, but it is a major issue causing debt levels to rise by £79 to £1,680 for those who cannot comfortably afford a funeral. Funeral poverty set a record of more than £160m an increase of around £10m on the previous year.

The report also reveals the funeral industry suffers from vast gulfs in funeral costs from area to area, with widely varying fees for crematoriums and a shortage of burial plots with costs from minor to mind boggling to buy a plot.

So what is needed is a wider choice of ways to say goodbye.

Direct cremations and other ‘no frills’ options are increasingly popular but the report highlights ‘the challenge is to ensure that awareness of these options is raised and consumers are encouraged to shop around more to find the right solution for their needs’.

Pure Cremation is probably the leading specialist in direct cremation, not only offering low-cost cremation-only services but pushing wider conversations about what a funeral should look like and what it should achieve.

Pure Cremation’s  Catherine Powell commented: “Britain seems caught between the reality of an almost completely secular society and a template for the final rite of passage that originated 200 years ago. Weddings have changed beyond recognition in the last two decades to reflect preferences – a similar reinvention for funerals is long overdue.

“It is not just a question of cost and the cheapest option – it’s a question of choice and more importantly what is right for the family and the deceased.”

It is now more than 10 years since a report commissioned by the Funeralcare Forum revealed that 80% were disappointed with the funeral they arranged for a loved one – a shocking statistic that had nothing to do with the quality of care provided and everything to do with an anxiety about whether they had “done the right thing”. Another reason for prepaid funeral, where that burden is largely lifted from the shoulders of those left behind.

“People continue to resist talking about death and funerals, perhaps because they don’t realise the range of choices they now have. This causes both emotional and financial distress that could so easily be avoided.”

The team at Pure Cremation feel they have a responsibility that goes beyond simply promoting their service. Price transparency has always been a fundamental part of their approach, along with a consultative service offering clear guidance for bereaved families to help them make fully informed decisions, because they recognised that whilst direct cremation may be the right choice for many it is not for all.

They have also found a way to make a real difference to a group highlighted in the report, those applying for assistance with funeral costs.

Pure Cremation Crematorium

Pure Cremations Crematorium at Charlton Park Crematorium, Andvover

Pure Cremations new crematorium is due to open in early 2019 and will meet the demand in Andover and surrounding areas for funeral services. It will also serve Pure Cremation’s direct cremation customers from across the UK, with interest in this modern alternative continuing to grow after David Bowie specifically chose this simple style of send-off.

Catherine Powell, director and co-founder of Pure Cremation, explained why it was so important to involve others who support the bereaved in Andover at such an early stage in the build programme: “The vision for Charlton Park Crematorium is of a valued community asset local people can be proud of, and which will provide families with the quality farewell experience they deserve – whatever their final wishes may be.  We are already working closely with the likes of clergy, civil celebrants and funeral home staff to achieve this vision and to meet the changing needs of Andover’s families.

“Funeral care-givers in the area are setting a truly innovative example and so we were delighted to accept Canon Jill Bentall’s invitation to speak at the first Funeral Stakeholder Meeting held at Bridge St Methodist Church. It was a great opportunity to outline our vision and answer questions.

“We are very grateful for the support we have received from the professional community since we first revealed our plans for Charlton Park Crematorium.  Many stakeholders have taken the time to understand our proposition –including S & J Maddocks funeral directors – and we look forward to continuing to develop a collaborative relationship built around offering every family the choice of a meaningful farewell on their terms.“

Charlton Park Crematorium represents a major investment by Pure Cremation in creating a sensitively-designed, state-of-the-art crematorium on vacant land in Andover.  A thoughtfully-planned and detailed landscaping scheme for the 11-acre site includes the retention of all protected trees and enhanced boundary planting, to create a tranquil setting for contemplation and remembrance.

The crematorium will feature a chapel which seats up to 80 mourners, a cremator hall, vestry, cosy farewell space for small gatherings, administrators’ office and car parking.  The facilities will enable Pure Cremation to provide an improved service; with greater flexibility on the timing of committals, and innovative options such as ‘virtual attendance’ and ‘virtual witness’, among the many additional benefits for its customers.

In a move which reaffirms its commitment to Andover, Pure Cremation will relocate its headquarters from Newbury to Charlton Park Crematorium.  With all its services brought together under one roof families will have the reassurance of knowing their loved ones are being looked after from the moment they come into Pure Cremation’s care until the scattering or return of the ashes.

Canon Jill Bentall said: “It was my pleasure to visit site and to officially commemorate the ground-breaking milestone at Charlton Park Crematorium. Having been very interested to learn about Pure Cremation’s future plans, I welcomed the opportunity to find out more about this important new community facility and to meet the team behind its construction.”

What is a direct cremation?
A direct cremation is a modern alternative to a traditional cremation funeral, where the cremation takes place completely separately from the personal farewell.

Direct cremation involves the collection and care of the deceased with dignity and respect. The coffin is delivered to the crematorium; and here the cremation takes place without a service and usually without any mourners being present. The ashes are then returned to the family – in Pure Cremation’s case, they are hand-delivered within 28 days of the cremation.

Direct cremation gives people the freedom to celebrate the lives of their loved ones in a far more personalised way – when and how it suits them. It is a straightforward, liberating, fuss-free choice; and it also represents excellent value for money when compared to the average costs of a traditional funeral.

About Pure Cremation?
Pure Cremation is trusted by more than a thousand families each year to guide them through the process of a dignified, fuss-free cremation without any compromise on the quality of care, and to inspire them to make the most of this new freedom to say goodbye their way.

The 21-strong Pure Cremation team, which is based in Newbury, has the capacity to serve thousands of families every year with trademark kindness and attention to detail. Each individual member of the team is equally committed to Bryan and Catherine’s original vision of simple care delivered to the highest standards.p

Pure Cremation Direct Cremation plans

Free Wills

Pure Cremation is urging people to make the most of Free Wills Month and save themselves hundreds of pounds in solicitor fees whilst making their final wishes known.

The team at the UK’s leading specialist provider of direct cremations is calling on individuals aged 55 and over to take advantage of the popular campaign which runs twice a year – with the next event taking place from October 2nd.

That said, Steve Pett of the Prepaid Funeral Review team added “Most people who chose to take our independent advice on choosing a funeral plan will get a voucher which will cover most of the cost of a normal Will at any time of the year – and with the option of paying more for more sophisticated advice, should it be needed.”

Ingrid McCleave of Eastbourne Law Solicitors said “Many non home owners in simple circumstances will be well served by simple Wills.  But most homeowners, business owners and those with blended families need more sophisticated advice, which is not always available.”

Pure Cremation continues: “Free Wills Month brings together a group of well-respected charities to offer members of the public the chance to have their ‘simple’ wills written or updated free of charge by using participating solicitors across the country.

It allows people to provide for friends and family as well as leave a gift to your chosen charity.”

Catherine Powell, co-founder and director of Pure Cremations believes the campaign is an opportunity to overcome a major issue faced by grieving families every day – confusion around a loved one’s final wishes.

Catherine said: “It is important to remember that dying without a will could leave your affairs in limbo for many months, adding to the cost and worry for your family.
“In the same way, failing to leave instructions about your funeral wishes could mean your family spend far more than they need to on a style of funeral you wouldn’t have wanted.”

A recent YouGov survey conducted on behalf of Pure Cremation revealed more than two-thirds of us (67 per cent) thought it was important our final wishes were carried out after our deaths, while 70 per cent of us wanted their loved ones’ final wishes carried out upon their deaths.

Sadly, the lack of guidance puts funeral arrangements for loved ones among the top ten causes for family conflict in the event of a death – ahead of custody of dependents and family relocations.

“Making a will protects your family and ensures your wishes are respected in terms of custody arrangements for children as well as the distribution of estates and funds; it only takes a few more minutes to record your funeral wishes in a separate document, ideally via a pre-paid plan, and so ensure that you really have done everything you can to shield your family from difficult decisions. “More people are opting for a direct cremation pre-paid plan, and the reasons are many and varied, as shown by our survey. Cost is certainly a factor – well over half our respondents (57 per cent) said the simple, low-cost pricing structure was an attraction, while 42 per cent said they wanted protection against rising funeral costs.

“But this is not the whole story – almost two-thirds of people (63 per cent) said they had purposefully chosen a direct cremation above a traditional funeral. Our survey figures have shown that more than a quarter (27 per cent) chose a direct cremation because they didn’t want a fuss, 16 per cent said they were of no religious denomination, while 14 per cent admitted to not liking funerals.

“Seventy-six per cent wanted to save their family from having to organise a funeral while more than half – 57 per cent – wanted their family and friends to celebrate their lives rather than mourn their loss. There’s no doubt that putting our affairs in order results in a huge weight off your shoulders right now, as well as caring for our loved ones even after we’ve gone.”

Pure Cremation was established by experienced funeral director Bryan Powell and his wife Catherine and was born out of a growing number of requests from customers for a direct cremation service.

The company predicts it will serve more than 1,200 families this year as it continues to meet the needs of a growing number of people opting for a respectful direct cremation arranged without any fuss and leaving their family free to say farewell how, where and when is right for them.

As the UK’s only dedicated direct cremation provider, the Pure Cremation team is able to deliver a level of personal service 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

For an independent review of direct cremation funeral plans, click the link.

Six Things You Should Know About Direct Cremation

This choice of a Direct Cremation Funeral Plan is much more than just about cost – although an important factor. At little more than half the cost of an average standard funeral plan they certainly look appealing…..but do read our personal view as well as this article from a provider dedicated to the concept. There is more detail of the providers here.

The rising cost of funerals and increased demand from mourners for a better way to approach planning a loved ones’ funeral has led to a rapid rise in the popularity of direct cremations in recent years.

A virtually unknown concept in the UK just five years ago, an estimated 14,000 people per year in the UK alone are now opting for this service.

Catherine Powell, Customer Experience Director at Pure Cremation  said the service is hugely popular in America, with the most notable direct cremations in recent months being David Bowie and Prince, and is fast growing in the UK where families are recognising it as a liberating and affordable alternative to a funeral.

Catherine said:

“This it is a simple, respectful way for a family to take care of the practical aspects of the cremation and often goes hand in hand with an even more personal memorial service or celebration of their life than the usual “funeral formula” can offer.”

Catherine said that a number of factors are swaying people’s decisions in favour of direct cremations. Among them are:

1. Direct cremation is the perfect answer for people who don’t like funerals.

They are the fastest growing form of funeral in the USA and predicted to take a substantial share of cremations in the UK in the next few years.

2. Choice, convenience and a preference for a no-fuss departure are the main reasons.

Surprisingly, the lower cost is not one of the main reasons that direct cremations are becoming increasingly popular.

3. Direct cremations may not involve a funeral service

but the same standards of respect and dignity are applied to care of the person who has died.

4. Family conflict

This can make a traditional funeral an unbearable ordeal – direct cremation offers the chance for each set of relatives can hold separate memorial events.

5. You still get the deceased’s ashes.*

If you want them, hand delivered by the Pure Cremation team.  In 2014 it was found that more than 25,000 sets of ashes are still waiting to be collected from UK funeral directors.

Catherine added: “Losing a loved one will always be traumatic but direct cremation gives you the time and space to plan the perfect celebration of life later on while we take proper care of the practical aspects.”

Pure Cremation was established by former funeral director Bryan Powell who has a pedigree in the funeral industry spanning nearly 30 years, together with his wife Catherine following a steady increase in enquiries for a direct cremation service.

Family-owned, it is the UK’s only dedicated direct cremation provider which enables the team at Pure Cremation to deliver an impressive level of personal service 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at a sensible, transparent price point.

6. Is Direct Cremation right for those left behind? Will they understand?

Having finished with Pure Cremations notes, we would urge readers to talk to us, or at the very least read THIS ARTICLE about the plusses and minuses of Direct Cremation.

  • Ashes are only returned at extra cost by most direct cremation providers.

Catholic Funerals Update 2016

Catholic Funerals Update Summary followed by full text,

Catholic Funerals

Catholic Funerals

The Catholic Church recently updated its’ advice on cremations.  In summary, cremation is permitted (though burial is much preferred).  However, the practice of scattering ashes or keeping them at home is prohibited,  Nor is it allowed to incorporate ashes is jewellery or otherwise separate the ashes.   As a lay person, it seems that the essence is keeping the body together ready for resurrection – and clearly cremation is not ideal from that viewpoint.

Once cremated, the remains should be kept in the church, cemetery or other specially designated sacred area.

Funeral Plan Quotes

Funeral Plan Quotes

Below is the circular the Catholic Church sent out regarding Catholic funerals.  For more information on taking out a Catholic Funeral plan, click the link or use the form to the right. Leave it, and it will inevitably cost more, and may be arranged by people who don’t understand your faith as you do.

Instruction Ad resurgendum cum Christo regarding the burial of the deceased and the conservation of the ashes in the case of cremation, 25.10.2016


The following is the full text of the Instruction of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “Ad resurgendum cum Christo”, regarding the burial of the deceased and the conservation of the ashes in the case of cremation, published today and signed by Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller and Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, respectively prefect and secretary of the dicastery.

1. To rise with Christ, we must die with Christ: we must “be away from the body and at home with the Lord”. With the Instruction Piam et Constantem of 5 July 1963, the then Holy Office established that “all necessary measures must be taken to preserve the practice of reverently burying the faithful departed”, adding however that cremation is not “opposed per se to the Christian religion” and that no longer should the sacraments and funeral rites be denied to those who have asked that they be cremated, under the condition that this choice has not been made through “a denial of Christian dogmas, the animosity of a secret society, or hatred of the Catholic religion and the Church”. Later this change in ecclesiastical discipline was incorporated into the Code of Canon Law (1983) and the Code of Canons of Oriental Churches (1990).

During the intervening years, the practice of cremation has notably increased in many countries, but simultaneously new ideas contrary to the Church’s faith have also become widespread. Having consulted the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts and numerous Episcopal Conferences and Synods of Bishops of the Oriental Churches, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has deemed opportune the publication of a new Instruction, with the intention of underlining the doctrinal and pastoral reasons for the preference of the burial of the remains of the faithful and to set out norms pertaining to the conservation of ashes in the case of cremation.

2. The resurrection of Jesus is the culminating truth of the Christian faith, preached as an essential part of the Paschal Mystery from the very beginnings of Christianity: “For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures; that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve”.

Through his death and resurrection, Christ freed us from sin and gave us access to a new life, “so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life”. Furthermore, the risen Christ is the principle and source of our future resurrection: “Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep […] For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive”.

It is true that Christ will raise us up on the last day; but it is also true that, in a certain way, we have already risen with Christ. In Baptism, actually, we are immersed in the death and resurrection of Christ and sacramentally assimilated to him: “You were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead”. United with Christ by Baptism, we already truly participate in the life of the risen Christ.

Because of Christ, Christian death has a positive meaning. The Christian vision of death receives privileged expression in the liturgy of the Church: “Indeed for your faithful, Lord, life is changed not ended, and, when this earthly dwelling turns to dust, an eternal dwelling is made ready for them in heaven”. By death the soul is separated from the body, but in the resurrection God will give incorruptible life to our body, transformed by reunion with our soul. In our own day also, the Church is called to proclaim her faith in the resurrection: “The confidence of Christians is the resurrection of the dead; believing this we live”.

3. Following the most ancient Christian tradition, the Church insistently recommends that the bodies of the deceased be buried in cemeteries or other sacred places.

In memory of the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord, the mystery that illumines the Christian meaning of death, burial is above all the most fitting way to express faith and hope in the resurrection of the body.

The Church who, as Mother, has accompanied the Christian during his earthly pilgrimage, offers to the Father, in Christ, the child of her grace, and she commits to the earth, in hope, the seed of the body that will rise in glory.

By burying the bodies of the faithful, the Church confirms her faith in the resurrection of the body, and intends to show the great dignity of the human body as an integral part of the human person whose body forms part of their identity. She cannot, therefore, condone attitudes or permit rites that involve erroneous ideas about death, such as considering death as the definitive annihilation of the person, or the moment of fusion with Mother Nature or the universe, or as a stage in the cycle of regeneration, or as the definitive liberation from the “prison” of the body.

Furthermore, burial in a cemetery or another sacred place adequately corresponds to the piety and respect owed to the bodies of the faithful departed who through Baptism have become temples of the Holy Spirit and in which “as instruments and vessels the Spirit has carried out so many good works”.

Tobias, the just, was praised for the merits he acquired in the sight of God for having buried the dead,  and the Church considers the burial of dead one of the corporal works of mercy.

Finally, the burial of the faithful departed in cemeteries or other sacred places encourages family members and the whole Christian community to pray for and remember the dead, while at the same time fostering the veneration of martyrs and saints.

Through the practice of burying the dead in cemeteries, in churches or their environs, Christian tradition has upheld the relationship between the living and the dead and has opposed any tendency to minimise, or relegate to the purely private sphere, the event of death and the meaning it has for Christians.

4. In circumstances when cremation is chosen because of sanitary, economic or social considerations, this choice must never violate the explicitly-stated or the reasonably inferable wishes of the deceased faithful. The Church raises no doctrinal objections to this practice, since cremation of the deceased’s body does not affect his or her soul, nor does it prevent God, in his omnipotence, from raising up the deceased body to new life. Thus cremation, in and of itself, objectively negates neither the Christian doctrine of the soul’s immortality nor that of the resurrection of the body.

The Church continues to prefer the practice of burying the bodies of the deceased, because this shows a greater esteem towards the deceased. Nevertheless, cremation is not prohibited, “unless it was chosen for reasons contrary to Christian doctrine”.

In the absence of motives contrary to Christian doctrine, the Church, after the celebration of the funeral rite, accompanies the choice of cremation, providing the relevant liturgical and pastoral directives, and taking particular care to avoid every form of scandal or the appearance of religious indifferentism.

5. When, for legitimate motives, cremation of the body has been chosen, the ashes of the faithful must be laid to rest in a sacred place, that is, in a cemetery or, in certain cases, in a church or an area, which has been set aside for this purpose, and so dedicated by the competent ecclesial authority.

From the earliest times, Christians have desired that the faithful departed become the objects of the Christian community’s prayers and remembrance. Their tombs have become places of prayer, remembrance and reflection. The faithful departed remain part of the Church who believes “in the communion of all the faithful of Christ, those who are pilgrims on earth, the dead who are being purified, and the blessed in heaven, all together forming one Church”.

The reservation of the ashes of the departed in a sacred place ensures that they are not excluded from the prayers and remembrance of their family or the Christian community. It prevents the faithful departed from being forgotten, or their remains from being shown a lack of respect, which eventuality is possible, most especially once the immediately subsequent generation has too passed away. Also it prevents any unfitting or superstitious practices.

6. For the reasons given above, the conservation of the ashes of the departed in a domestic residence is not permitted. Only in grave and exceptional cases dependent on cultural conditions of a localized nature, may the Ordinary, in agreement with the Episcopal Conference or the Synod of Bishops of the Oriental Churches, concede permission for the conservation of the ashes of the departed in a domestic residence. Nonetheless, the ashes may not be divided among various family members and due respect must be maintained regarding the circumstances of such a conservation.

7. In order that every appearance of pantheism, naturalism or nihilism be avoided, it is not permitted to scatter the ashes of the faithful departed in the air, on land, at sea or in some other way, nor may they be preserved in mementos, pieces of jewellery or other objects. These courses of action cannot be legitimised by an appeal to the sanitary, social, or economic motives that may have occasioned the choice of cremation.

8. When the deceased notoriously has requested cremation and the scattering of their ashes for reasons contrary to the Christian faith, a Christian funeral must be denied to that person according to the norms of the law.

The Sovereign Pontiff Francis, in the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect on 18 March 2016, approved the present Instruction, adopted in the Ordinary Session of this Congregation on 2 March 2016, and ordered its publication.

Rome, from the Offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, 15 August 2016, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

 Catholic Funerals the Doctrine.