The Different Types of Funerals

There’s a wide choice of funeral and burial options to choose from, from secular and humanist ceremonies to natural burials and traditional cremations. If you’re unsure which is the right option for you when you pass away, or you’re deciding how best to honour someone you love who has died, these are some of the main options.

Traditional Burial

A traditional funeral service often combines religious aspects, such as a church setting and hymns, but it doesn’t have to be. Funeral services can take place at a natural burial site or at a crematorium, as well as includes as much or as little of the religious content of the service as you or your loved one wishes.

Humanist Ceremony

A humanist ceremony is a non-religious service which celebrates the life of the person who has passed away, rather than acknowledging the afterlife. It can be held at a number of locations, from a hall, your home or at the graveside. A humanist ceremony is led by a celebrant and the person’s life is the focus point of the service.

Natural Burial

A natural burial has become an increasingly popular option, with the rise of environmental awareness in recent years. Natural burial sites are common across the UK and there are many sites which are accredited by the Natural Death Centre charity. These burials involve a biodegradable coffin, or burial shroud, and the individual is buried no deeper than two feet from the top of the coffin or shroud to reduce methane emissions.


A cremation is one of the most common option that people choose, with cremations accounting for around 70% of all ceremonies. Often, these ceremonies take place at the crematorium although they can take place elsewhere where the family or friends of the deceased choose to scatter the ashes.

Direct Cremation

A direct cremation is an affordable option that takes place immediately after the death, without a funeral service before as with a traditional cremation. In some cases, a memorial service may take place at a later date, but this option excludes the need for a funeral service or a casket.