Funerals, a costly undertaking an ITV documentary

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Pure Cremation buck the trend for transparency in funeral costs

Funeral directors across the land were challenged again by the media about funeral costs when the ITV Tonight documentary ‘Funerals: A Costly Undertaking?’ aired on Thursday 3rd November, 2016.

Yes, the usual points about the need for greater price transparency and lack of flexibility of service options for less well-off families were made, but at least half the programme time was spent stressing the importance of thinking ahead and doing research about a funeral plan so that you and those you leave behind are better prepared when the worst happens.

The results of the survey featured in the episode were sobering but not surprising. Those results were*:

  • 78% adults have not done any research into funeral options
  • 53% adults have not communicated funeral wishes to their loved ones
  • 62% adults didn’t know how much the average funeral cost
  • 44% adults didn’t know how they would make up a shortfall in funeral costs with 30% saying they would put money on a credit card
  • 49% adults who had organised a funeral said that knowing the wishes of the deceased made it easier to organise and pay for the send off

*Information copyright of

We believe that, as direct cremation specialists, Pure Cremation is helping to achieve two important goals:

  1. By offering a new way to create a send off that is right for you
  2. By provoking vital conversation about a previously taboo subject and so helping to educate consumers about funerals.

The families served by Pure Cremation with immediate need of funeral care (and our pre-paid funeral plan clients)tell us our service is liberating, affordable and modern…but for others the very idea of a committal withoutmourners, hearses and flowers is horrifying. That’s OK. What matters is making sure each family can get exactly what they need.

Well done to Adam Shaw and the ITV Tonight team for gently but clearly highlighting how little the public knows about the wishes of their closest relatives, let alone the choices available to them.

So how do we help to change the conversation on funeral planning?

Everyone who plans their own funeral is heroic. They have been brave enough to face their mortality and to do something truly positive about it, and so it’s the Pure Cremation team’s job to make this as easy as possible using good information, simple application forms and friendly, caring staff. That way we can (and do) transform a dreaded task into a life affirming experience.