From 19th July 2021, there are no legal limits on the number of people who can attend funerals or commemorative events. Those attending, arranging or managing such events should consider that it may be harder to manage the risk of spreading COVID-19 if spaces are crowded, and venue operators may choose to set their own limits (please see details below for local Crematoria). Full Government guidelines can be found here.
From 19 July, you will not need to stay 2 metres apart from people you do not live with, and venues are not required to follow social distancing rules. However, keeping your distance and limiting close contact can help reduce the risk of catching or passing on COVID-19. People who are self-isolating or who are in quarantine following international travel may be present at a funeral where a legal exemption applies. Keeping a distance of 2 metres is strongly advised for those attending a funeral during their self-isolation or quarantine period following international travel.
Our summary of advise would be:
Masks – the advice of the Chief Medical Officer and Deputy Chief Medical Officer is that masks should still be worn indoors, and most crematoria staff will continue to wear them inside chapels. Face coverings will no longer be required by law in any setting. However the government expects and recommends that people wear face coverings in crowded areas.
Singing – restrictions on singing will be lifted, but again we would encourage people to remain seated while singing and to wear masks to limit the risk of spread of infection.
Hand sanitiser – we would encourage people to still use hand sanitiser and most venues will have this available.
Own bearers – we have allowed families to carry coffins since opening and will continue to do so. We will also continue to offer them hand sanitiser once they have positioned the coffin.
Mourners with Covid – whilst we cannot mandate, we ask that no one who has tested positive with Covid or who has been asked to self-isolate attends a funeral to protect other mourners, our staff and crematoria staff.
Live web casting – this will still be an option for those who are vulnerable or tested positive to be able to participate in a funeral service.
Local Crematoria guidelines for the numbers of mourners that can attend a funeral are as follows:
Lichfield & District Crematorium – Unlimited
Chase & District Crematorium – Maximum number of mourners = 90 seated in the chapel
Streetly Crematorium (East Chapel) – Maximum number of mourners = 48 (18 seated in the chapel, 30 outside)
Streetly Crematorium (West Chapel) – Maximum number of mourners = 76 (46 seated inside, 30 outside)
Stafford Crematorium – Maximum number of mourners = 94 (94 seated in the chapel, additional standing in the foyer)
Sutton Coldfield Crematorium – Maximum number of mourners = 40 seated in the chapel.
OPTIONS AVAILABLE TO YOU
- We welcome you into our offices and still have hand sanitiser and track & trace. We do ask if anyone has tested positive to not visit out offices, we are still able to arrange funerals over the phone or via other electronic means. You should not arrange a funeral in person if anyone involved has symptoms or should be self-isolating, in accordance with government advice. It is vital that we do all we can to reduce the spread of the virus and that funeral service employees (who are key workers) can remain healthy and able to continue supporting bereaved families.
- Limits on numbers are still in place in local crematoria and places of worship so do ask us and we will be happy to assist you.
- Think about who will attend and ensuring those from at-risk groups (e.g. pregnant women or those with underlying health conditions) are not put at greater risk by attending.
- Consider holding the funeral service outdoors as this will reduce the risk of the virus spreading between mourners but as the disease is airborne.
- Webcasting/live streaming the funeral service (using professional or personal devices), enabling other mourners to still participate without putting themselves and others at risk of harm.
- Please don’t publicly advertise the funeral details to reduce the risk of other, well-meaning mourners arriving unexpectedly. They may be turned away at the door, which could be distressing for them and the bereaved family. It will also place funeral key workers at unnecessary risk of harm.
- All charitable collections should be done online. We offer free online memorial pages we create for you.