Recently I helped lead a project for SICA to stage two funerals for educational purposes. This involved us in conducting ceremonies for imagined people at Brewsterwells Crematorium near St Andrews.

Michael leads a committal at Brewsterwells Crematorium

I’m now starting to use the footage to help families plan funerals. It’s a great help to see the actual layout and get a visual picture of the different parts that make up a funeral. Even in this short time it has been useful to be able to show people what we mean by “committal” for example and how this can vary. It can depends on location – but also on the wishes of the family. Looking at photos of a real ceremony or even watching snippets of video is proving to be valuable.

From a local perspective, Dundee Crematorium is due to close next week (July 2024) for another set of major refurbishments. Cremations will still take place but services will be held at a hotel. While this will be a good solution for many families, it’s also possible that people may consider other places such as Parkgrove, Brewsterwells or Perth. (Especially for people who live near but not in Dundee itself.) It’s really helpful to be able to show people directly how different crematoriums look and work. The similarities and the differences.

The images are available to SICA members. But if you feel they would be useful in your work, contact us to discuss possibly sharing them.

(Photo courtesy of SICA and PhotoJenniK)

Michael Hannah, Broughty Ferry, June 2024

Using the staged funeral to inform

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