Charles Cowling
Real ale made by boutique brewers has at last begun to drive down sales of lager for the first time in half a century reports yesterday’s Observer. Intriguingly, the Society of Independent Brewers (Siba) reports that while its 420 members enjoyed a combined sales rise of 4 per cent last
Charles Cowling
It’s interesting to note that two of the most important drivers for change in modern funerals have come, not from pro-active consumers or wild-eyed visionaries,  but from urgent if mundane economic and environmental needs. They are, famously, natural burial and’ less famously, the held-over cremation. Ken West, for all that
Charles Cowling
Over in Lufkin, Texas, a new funeral home has opened. What’s different about it? It offers one of those familiar back-to-the-past initiatives which mark progress in funeral service: it’s owner is making his clients aware that they can have the funeral at home – if they want. “It used to
Charles Cowling
Yesterday I wrote about the two problems that most bedevil funeral directors. First, in the public perception, they offer poor value for money, a charge of which they are, most of them, innocent. Second, they may feel that they occupy a marginalised position in society because people wonder what’s under
Charles Cowling
Everyone agrees that choice in funeral arrangements is a good thing. Even the UK’s most Jurassic undertakers are nodding their heads fervently on this one. They’ve come round at last (sort of). It’s the mantra in Funeralland: Personalisation x 3 (I can’t be bothered to type it). There’s money in
Charles Cowling
Interesting piece in the Earth Times on how Germans are doing funerals differently: Germany is experiencing a new type of culture of bereavement. People are moving away from the classic funeral with a priest and familiar rituals to one that confronts grief and death in a more personal way. “Germany’s
Charles Cowling
My good friend the embalmer is not noted for halfway utterance, nor for half-tones in her vocabulary. She calls a spade a spade and hits you with it if she thinks you’re wrong, thwang thwang. She’s never less than invigorating. One of the themes she warms to hotliest is that