"The scars left by the tragic events of the past eighteen months and the unimaginable loss of life we have experienced, will be felt for many years to come.
If there are any positives to be taken from this catastrophic period, it is that we are beginning to see something of a seismic shift in the nation’s attitudes towards death, with more of us willing to open up to our loved ones about how we’d like our own farewell to be carried out.
Our latest research shows that over a third of British adults feel funerals are too sombre and should be more uplifting and an estimated 35 million say they want their own farewell to be a celebration of the life they have lived. This figure has risen from an estimated 20 million people who expressed the same in 2019.
As we become more comfortable discussing topics around mortality and funerals, it’s also becoming increasingly clear that the traditional funeral does not appeal to the majority of us, with religious ceremonies and black clothing becoming less popular.
Coupled with a rise in demand for more uplifting celebrations, we’re also seeing greater personalisation of funerals than ever before, perhaps prompted by the beautifully personal funeral of The Duke of Edinburgh whose Land Rover hearse resonated with so many.
From bespoke hearses to glitter coffins and themed dress codes, the possibilities really are endless when it comes to tailoring a final farewell.
As we start to get more comfortable with the idea of our own mortality, we’re encouraging people everywhere to start the conversation with family or friends.
Of course, losing someone we love is devastating, but a great deal of comfort can be taken from knowing that their funeral is being carried out in the way they would have wanted."
The power of personalisation
In 2019, an estimated 20 million Brits wanted their funeral to be a celebration of life. However, our latest research reveals that this figure has increased by approximately 77%, with an estimated 35 million now sharing this wish.
Three-quarters (75%) of the nation who would like to have a funeral now feel comfortable talking about their wishes, while one quarter (25%) of all British adults knew they could have a funeral plan but weren’t aware that it could be personalised.
Personalisation also appears to be an important factor when planning a funeral as 44% said personalising a funeral reminds the guests attending of the personality of their loved one, whilst 37% said it can help lift the mood for the guests attending.
The solemnity of religious settings are falling out of favour with British adults, as almost seven in ten of those who wish to have a funeral (69%) say that it’s not important that their funeral should take place in one.
And Brits appear to be turning their back on black funeral attire, with over a fifth of those polled (22%) stating they’d like mourners to dress in bright colours, compared to only 13% who specified they’d prefer a dark dress code.