The Good Funeral Guide – a ‘consumer guide’ to the practical aspects of organising a funeral
Natural Death Centre – an excellent source of help, support and guidance on planning a funeral.
Scattering Ashes – offer good simple advice and ideas about what to do with cremation ashes – http://www.scattering-ashes.co.uk/ – they offer advice on transporting ashes, the rules on travelling abroad with them and advice on where you are allowed to scatter them.
The ‘Dead Good’ guides:
We Need to Talk About the Funeral by Jane Morrell & Simon Smith, Accent Press, 2007.
A clear and comprehensive guide to planning the kind of funeral you want, from finding a funeral director to decorating the chapel. You can download a PDF version of this here.
Poems and readings
These sites may give you ideas for some words – poetry or readings – that feel appropriate:
https://stoneletters.com/blog/funeral-poems – really lovely and unusual choices
You are free to choose any music or song that feels right, whether pre-recorded, or sung/played live. If you might like a hymn, these pages give a useful overview of a range of traditional hymns:
These pages give an overview of ideas for more contemporary music and songs:
For online memorials – with words, pictures, music and even video. You can allow others to contribute and share memories with each other. It is free and, having investigated a number of such sites, is recommended by green fuse: www.muchloved.com
If you are interested in a carved memorial or headstone, there are some inspiring examples here: https://stoneletters.com/our-work/category/headstones
Venues for the funeral ceremony in Gloucestershire
You can hold the main ceremony away from the burial ground or crematorium. This gives you more freedom to personalise the space, and to take your time – it also provides shelter from the elements if a burial is planned and the weather is inclement. You can then go on to the final venue for the Committal Service.
Village halls – it is worth considering whether a local village hall might be a good venue where you can have a relaxed ceremony without the time constraints of a crematorium slot. You could gather back there afterwards too, if wished.
The Asha Centre, near Mitcheldean in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire – a peaceful and beautiful venue at a centre committed to inter-faith development. There is a gorgeous garden room which seats around 80 people, and its glass walls have views across the gardens and valley.
The Matara Centre, near Stroud – a beautiful and flexible venue, open to a range of events and spiritualities.
The Gloucestershire Council web site list venues registered for weddings, many of which may be suitable for funeral services or for gatherings afterwards, or for memorial services.