Charles Cowling
It’s an interesting fact that a funeral director can go to a hospital mortuary and collect a dead person to bring back to their funeral home on the verbal instruction of that dead person’s executor. That’ll be good enough for the mortuary. If a funeral director whom they’ve never seen
Charles Cowling
In his excellent book Accompany Them With Singing (read it before you die or I’ll kill you), Thomas G Long says this: “When someone dies, Christians, like all other humans, look around at the immediate environment and ask: What do we have to do? What seems fitting to do? What
Charles Cowling
Jessica Mitford Back in 1995 the funeral industry had been in a state of low level excitement and terror for some fifteen years. Conglomerates were stalking the land, seeking whom they might devour. Their talk of economies of scale made perfectly good sense. The little old family firms looked a
Charles Cowling
David Barrington is an independent funeral director in Liverpool. We swap emails from time to time, and I asked him if he’d like to be my guest on this blog. I’m very pleased that he has accepted the invitation. And I very much hope that we shall hear from him
Charles Cowling
The Undertaking is a documentary about Lynch and Sons, the funeral home in Milford, Michigan, which is also home to Thomas Lynch, the man whose writings and poetry have greatly influenced the thinking of so many of us in the UK. It’s a marvellous piece of work. Watch it in
Charles Cowling
There’s an interesting letter in this month’s Funeral Service Times from a funeral director, Brian Howard. Actually, it’s more of a suicide note, but we’ll come to that. He’s fed up with people ordering funerals they can’t pay for, or for which their dead people did not make any provision.
Charles Cowling
An interesting thing about undertaking is that you don’t have to come at it from a position of actually being an undertaker. Does that make no sense? Let me explain. I know how undertakers feel. I am a writer. It is very difficult to come at writing from the position
Charles Cowling
Interesting piece in this month’s Funeral Service Journal (FSJ), the undertakers’ trade mag, by Howard Hogson. Howard Hodgson? He was the young turk who bought his dad’s ailing funeral home in Birmingham for £14,00 in 1975 and embarked on an acquisition spree which had landed him 546 branches by 1991,
Charles Cowling
The Guardian ran a short piece on Saturday about those who work in the death industry. One of the themes was humour as a coping mechanism. One of the interviewees was Andrew Leverton of Leverton’s, by appointment undertaker to HRH the Queen. Asked if he found aspects of his work
Charles Cowling
The BBC has got a poetry season running. They’ve been dusting off dead rhymers from ages past and pushing them out in front of the cameras. But they’ve left the memory of Geoffrey Chaucer undisturbed and unsung, for all that he was the first poet to be buried in Westminster