Wag goodbye to his lordship

Charles 5 Comments



Lord Avebury, the Liberal Democrat peer who died on Valentine’s day was noted for the eccentricity of some of his views. He was a conventional supporter of assisted suicide but his expressed preferences for his disposal raised eyebrows.

He was the only person to have his body rejected by Battersea Dogs Home. A keen environmentalist, he was determined to keep his deathprint to a minimum so he offered his corpse to be eaten by strays. The Sun calculated that he’d fill 168 1lb tins of dogfood. Battersea turned him down. They said his ageing corpse wouldn’t be sufficiently nourishing.

His last request concerning his disposal was that he might be buried without a coffin, thus enabling his remains to return to the earth as rapidly as possible and push up a tree.

You know what happened next? Yes, he was told that this is illegal.



  1. Charles

    … and he bought

    it? It beggars belief that someone of such vision could simply accept what he was told. But what did happen to his dead body? And what a gift his bones would have been to a pack of stray dogs — that’s what I want for my remains, in case anyone’s listening!

    1. Charles

      Jeanne, shrouds are indeed intended for burial. Whether a burial ground or cemetery accepts a shroud is, presumably, their prerogative, though I would challenge their refusal… But illegal? Of course not. The problem is that folk will tell you what they believe, or want you to hear, or any old rubbish they dredge out of their brain without checking it, and there’s no reason in the matter of funerals and body disposal to believe even what the professionals tell you. I’ve been told by a crematorium employee that a certain type of coffin was not allowed; next day, he told me it was.

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