Arranging a funeral is often the last thing you want to think about when someone you care about has died.
My role as a Celebrant is to help and guide you throughout the process, and to create and deliver a personal and unique ceremony, reflecting the wishes of the person who has died, and their next of kin.
I am also happy to assist you in planning your own Ceremony, so that when the time comes those closest to you will be able to carry out your wishes, making the whole process easier for them, and ensuring the Ceremony is exactly as you would like it to be.
I am a fully qualified Funeral Celebrant, here to help you to deliver a unique Ceremony for a unique person.
Funeral Planning Advocate.
I am passionate about the need talk about of end of life, and funeral services, to become part of the norm. For years it has been a taboo subject, something to be avoided at all costs, but it is so important to talk to your loved ones about your wishes
For most of us, we don't know when our life will end, but we do know that it will, at some point. No matter how long, or short, our life has been, it deserves to be celebrated in a way that we would like. The music should be our favourite pieces, our life story should be how we would tell it.
There is a huge amount of 'life admin' that you can do in advance. You can write letters to your loved ones, sit with a Celebrant and plan your funeral service (writing your Wishes), make your Will (this is really important), and maybe prepare gifts for your loved ones.
As an advocate I use every possible situation to encourage people to talk openly about their wishes, and to plan ahead. I am always happy to give a light hearted talk about this to any group or organisation.
Please do not hesitate to contact me to discuss this in more detail.
The Life in Words Project.
For the last two years I have been determined to find a way to preserve all the wonderful stories that I tell at every service I deliver. I have felt that it was important that these stories are made available to researchers, students and academics now, but especially in the future.
I have teamed up with a department within Birmingham University to bring this project to life. At the moment (June 2023) it is in the early stages, but we are taking huge strides in the right direction, and it is already being strongly supported by families and academics.
The aim is to save each donated script in perpetuity. The life stories we tell are such a rich and important part of our social history that they deserve to be preserved.
"A Funeral is not a Day in a Lifetime,
it is a Lifetime in a Day."
I am happy to travel anywhere within the UK, beyond the three Counties, but please bear in mind that this may incur additional travel costs.
“From the moment Mum and I first met you we felt absolute confidence in you and trusted you implicitly.
No-one could have delivered Dad’s service better than yourself you captured everything we wanted you too.
Also at the wake numerous people commented on what a lovely service it was and how it was delivered.
We can’t thank you enough for your kindness and thoughtfulness throughout.”
"So many people have commented on how lovely the service was for mum, and that we did her proud.
A special 'thank you' must go to Ruth! She was amazing throughout the whole process. Her help and guidance right from the start has been wonderful and very much appreciated. She did a fabulous job on the day and looked after us really well, keeping us calm even though the nerves were extremely high!
Both family and friends have said how lovely she was and that it came across as if she knew mum personally.
It is such a difficult time and her kindness and compassion was a great comfort when it was needed most."
A Civil Funeral allows the beliefs and wishes of the person who has died, and their family, to guide the ceremony.
The ceremony may contain hymns and prayers, or may be a time for quiet reflection. Alternatively you may choose to celebrate the life of the deceased with live music and host a party.
Whether you are planning a cremation, burial or to scatter the ashes, then I am able to create a personal ceremony for you.
There is no need to hold the ceremony in a traditional setting. You may feel that a Crematorium or Woodland Burial Site are appropriate and fitting, or you may choose your local village hall or other venue instead. The choice is entirely yours.
A Civil Ceremony allows you to create a unique ceremony for a unique person, and I am there to support you, and ensure it is everything you wish it to be.
You will either have been referred to me through your Funeral Director, by word of mouth, or found my website.
Once we are in contact then I will arrange to meet with you, either in your own home or at a venue to suit you.
I know first hand what a difficult time this is for you, and I will do everything I can to make this process as easy as possible.
When we meet we will talk about the person who has died, so that I can gain an understanding of the person they were. We will talk through your initial thoughts regarding the ceremony, and then will agree an outline and begin to fill in the structure.
This meeting can take up to two hours and you may well wish to have others there to support you, and to help you make decisions.
I will then put together the content, which I will share with you to ensure that it is everything you wish it to be.
On the day I will be there to conduct the ceremony on your behalf and to ensure your wishes are met.
After the ceremony I will send to you, if you wish, a presentation copy of the ceremony for you to keep or share with those who could not attend.
There are many options available to you. Whilst some people choose a traditional cremation or burial ceremony, others may prefer to think outside the box, and embrace the personality of the person who has died.
For some people it is more appropriate to hold a small, family only service, followed by a Memorial Service a few weeks later. This is often the case if the deceased is well known and you are expecting a large number of people to attend.
You may just wish to say goodbye privately and then hold a celebration at a later date.
Whatever type of Ceremony you choose there is always flexibility. You may wish to have a choir, a band, or simply play a special, meaningful piece of music.
The choice is entirely yours.
Following a cremation you may wish to hold a small ceremony when you scatter the ashes. I am more than happy to do this for you, to make it meaningful and unique.
My role does not change, I am there to support and guide you throughout, and to conduct the ceremony on your behalf, ensuring it is everything you wish it to be.
A Living Ceremony (or Funeral) is not a new idea, in Japan people have been holding them since the 1990's.
The book 'Tuesday's with Morrie' prompted people to think about why we hold funerals after someone has died, when we could, in fact, hold a ceremony whilst they are still with us.
A Living Ceremony is for those who wish to be present at the final celebration in their life. It is a time to celebrate the life of someone who is nearing the end of their life, either through age or ill health.
The Ceremony gives the individual a chance to say thank you to those who have helped and supported them over the years.
Some people use it as an opportunity to explain why they have written their Will a certain way.
Living Ceremonies are often planned by the individual, with help and support from their family and friends. My role is to help and guide you through this process and ensure the Ceremony runs smoothly on the day.
As always, I am happy to chat about this option, and help in any way that I can.
When I deliver a funeral for someone who was still working, it is obvious that their colleagues are going to be grieving.
Very few businesses have a Bereavement Policy in place, or any form of Bereavement Support.
I work with businesses, by creating a bespoke support package, either to help them to write their Bereavement Policy, or offering support when a collegue has died.
Alongside being a Celebrant I also specialise in providing professional document editing and proofreading services, as well as copywriting.
I can proofread absolutely anything, from business plans, leaflets, websites or apps to essays and dissertations, CVs and personal statements, plus novels, letters and all professional documents.
Focus on detail is key to my service. I complete a thorough review of your writing, to correct errors in spelling, punctuation, grammar and syntax.
Everything is returned within the agreed time limit.
I can also copy edit or copywrite a document for you.
I am happy to provide a quote for your work, just drop me an email.
I have held many different job roles, some of which involved organising events, but at the heart of them all has been the desire to help people, especially through difficult times.
I seem to have always been the 'go to' person to write and read the eulogy at funerals for family and friends, and doing so has always given me a great deal of pleasure. Whilst it has been a difficult thing to do, (I can assure you that standing up and talking about someone you care deeply about is never easy) I have always felt a great pride in being able to contribute to the Ceremony, and help to say goodbye.
When I decided that the time had come for a career change it seemed like the perfect role would be that of Funeral Celebrant. What could be more rewarding than being able to support people at a time when they most need it? To be able to create a Ceremony that is unique and special, to celebrate the life of a person, and help those who are grieving, is an absolute privilege.
I am a fully qualified, and insured, professional Funeral Celebrant. (I have a Diploma in Funeral Celebrancy, the highest level accredited national qualification available in Funeral Celebrancy in the UK). I have a love of learning and continue to enhance my training whenever possible.
I am always happy to pop along to a group meeting or AGM to give some insight into my role, and talk about the different aspects of a funeral service/celebration. This is an interesting, light-hearted and thought provoking presentation.
If you would like to chat about this with me, then feel free to e-mail or give me a call.
I also use my skills to Proofread, Copy Edit, Copywrite and undertake Research. I am always happy to chat about this, please feel free to give me a call.