Practical Guide for Funerals

Before the funeral / memorial ceremony

When I call you to discuss where we meet to plan the service, we will decide together what is the most convenient and best way of doing this, whether it be face-to-face
somewhere mutually convenient, on Zoom, WhatsApp video, or by phone.

Planning the funeral

This is the opportunity to get it absolutely right for your loved one. They deserve nothing less.

Allow two hours for my visit; it might take more or less time, but we shouldn’t be rushed.

Invite other close family members to attend, and if not possible for them to attend, I can speak to them separately.

It is helpful for me to know as much as possible about your loved one: what they were like, what they did, what they thought about things, what made them tick, photographs
of them with family/friends, any wishes they may have had for their funeral, what their own thoughts on death were.

We will work out all the details, and I will liaise with your chosen funeral director.

During the funeral

It is the time for you and your family/friends to grieve in your own way, so it is the job of the funeral director and me to look after you, taking care of all the practical details. If
you haven’t done anything like this before, don’t worry, we have.


I will give you as much support as you need. You may only need some moral support or backup, or you may need to give the responsibility over to me completely. Either way, having planned it all beforehand we know what is going to happen, and are well-prepared.

I wish you well and hope you have found some answers to your questions here. Please call me if you wish to discuss how to honour your loved one in a proper and meaningful way.

Upcoming Events
Dying Matters Awareness Week event

Dying Matters Awareness Week event

Location: Brighton Unitarian Church, New Road, Brighton BN1 1UF

A day of activities, including talks, films, meditation, discussion, death cafe, coffin club, funeral planning and more…

Full details...

We wanted Frances to be the celebrant at our beautiful mum's funeral, it was a shocking and extremely challenging time for us. She listened and guided us through the process with compassion, kindness, empathy and love. She was always on hand when we had questions and was wonderfully directive, which was incredibly helpful when our heads were all over the place. She organised and guided us through the service process, sorting times out to suit us, which was tricky as one of us is living in New Zealand. I would have no hesitation in recommending Frances as a celebrant for any occasion. N.T.
Frances helped my brother and I prepare for our father’s funeral. We were in different places so met by Zoom which was great, and immediately felt at ease with Frances who laid out the whole process easily in a way that we could understand. She was friendly and empathetic and helped us put the service together and make suggestions. The service she worked with us to deliver was everything we had hoped for and we couldn’t have done it without her. She played an essential role both in the lead-up, and on the day of the service. Thank you Frances, for all your help. R.K
On behalf of us all I would like to sincerely thank you for leading our goodbye to Mum at Clayton Wood last Tuesday. It was a beautiful service - moving, whilst calm and peaceful, and we very much appreciated your sensitivity and thoughtfulness. From our first communication, you put us at ease, showing interest in each of us individually, and encouraging and guiding us through our preparation for last Tuesday and the service itself. Your friendly, gentle and caring approach has helped us greatly at this time. F.B.
Thank you for all your understanding, help and kindness in steering us through organising G's funeral to the point where we actually came to understand what we wanted. The outcome was a wonderful service that you conducted with such warmth and inclusiveness, that was a celebration of G's life. So many people commented on how impressive you were. We are now able to look back on the ceremony with happiness, through the sadness, which is an outcome we never thought possible. A.W.
Frances was our celebrant yesterday, she was magnificent! With an enormous amount of planning by her, for us, she organised us in our grief; with sensitivity and honesty, which culminated in a triumph of our day of celebration. She set the perfect tone, a balance of respect for my wife with the grace, humour and dignity required when addressing over 60 people. A truly amazing day, I can't recommend Frances highly enough. D.H.
I could not have said goodbye to my husband without your help. You were there for me every step of the way and I can't thank you enough. The service was a beautiful celebration of his life and just how I wanted it to be. Your care and compassion gave me strength at such a sad time. H.S.