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Frequently asked questions - making funeral arrangements

We pride ourselves at Butterfields for our extensive knowledge and ability to appreciate how our clients feel at the point of contacting us. In order to answer any of those awkward questions often considered, we have compiled a selection of FAQ’s to help you understand the options available, as well as the process for the variety of services we provide.

How do I arrange a funeral and know which is the right one to choose?

It is critical that the right type of funeral and service is decided on, as this is a very personal decision, and should be one that best suits the individual and the family.

We at Butterfields are noted for our attention to detail and are more than happy to discuss even the smallest of details, and personal touches with you so that the funeral in all its parts is a true reflection of the individual, giving satisfaction to all who are involved.

It may be that you feel that you would like the cortege to take a particular route, pausing at a particular place that is appropriate and has meaning to the deceased or family, personalising the coffin with photographs or pictures, or mourners or funeral staff wearing special colour highlights. Most things are possible and we are more than happy to discuss these things with you, because that is what we do, that is our job, and we can make it all happen.

How do I register a death?

It is normal practice for a close relative to register a death before the funeral, however if no relative is available, then this may be carried out by any person present at the death, the occupier of the premises where the death took place, or the person who is accepting responsibility for making the funeral arrangements.

Most registrars operate an appointment system and we can assist with this. We can also arrange transport and someone to accompany you if required. 

What the registrar needs to know

  • Date and place of death
  • Full name of deceased
  • Date and place of birth
  • Occupation
  • Home address
  • If the deceased was in receipt of a pension 
  • Or allowance from public funds
  • If applicable , the date of birth of the surviving spouse

The registrar will also require the following documents

  • Medical Certificate of the cause of death (issued by the doctor)
  • Deceased’s National Health Service medical card (if available)
  • Deceased’s birth certificate
  • Deceased’s marriage certificate (if applicable)

The registrar will usually issue a green certificate for burial or cremation, which should be delivered to us as soon as possible following registration. A charge is usually made by the registrar for other certificates, or certified copies of the entry in the register, which may be required for legal or financial purposes.

If the Coroner is involved we will be able to give you advise as to the procedure to be followed as this can vary from place to place.   

What should I consider when choosing a Coffin?

Selecting a funeral coffin is not only a strange experience for most people, it can be quite distressing and confusing. Our funeral directors and staff at Butterfields are not only trained, but highly experienced in advising and assisting people to make the right choice for them and their circumstances. 

The choice can be quite daunting but we will guide you gently through the process and help you to make the right decision both in style and cost of your chosen coffin.

The range is quite extensive in both coffins (the traditional coffin shape ) and funeral caskets (the rectangular shape). From the traditional veneered coffin to wool, willow, bamboo, and many other materials, also American style caskets in various metals and hardwoods. We can also advise on restrictions which may apply in the case of cremation imposed by cremation regulations.

The opportunity of personalising coffins today is quite extensive as can be seen in the illustrations shown. One of the alternatives is the use of what is referred to as: the Coffin Cover.

Please take a look at just a small selection of coffins available here.

What options are available for funeral transportation?

There are a number of things that need considering when thinking about funeral transport. The traditional procession or cortege usually consists of the hearse and limousines.

Our Modern Jaguar Hearse and Limousines are the most popular but a large range of alternatives are available, particularly the vehicle to carry the coffin. You may like to use our own Victorian horse-drawn hearse, or a motorcycle, lorry or double decker bus hearse. We have an extensive list of arrangements we can make on your behalf. 

One of the transport considerations is, who is to be provided for, this is normally for the immediate family. Our Limousines carry 6 passengers in the rear and 1 in front with the driver.

Another factor to consider, is where the cortege is to leave from and where it is to return to, this in turn brings up the subject of the venue for the reception or wake, if you feel this to be appropriate. We have our own catering rooms and can supply catering to outside venues if required.

Please visit The Butterfields fleet of funeral vehicles for further details and our experienced staff can help you with all of this and more, please just ask?

We are here to help you

Butterfields strive to provide a sympathetic understanding to every situation. We use our expertise and guidance to make the passing of loved family member as painless as possible.

Please use the contact form below to inform us of your requirements and we will contact you at your preferred time, whether that be by phone, email or in person.