St John’s Winchester Charity

Burial or Cremation

If the person who has died had a Funeral Plan, their wishes will be recorded. Alternatively, you may know their wishes, or they may be recorded in their will.  In the absence of clear instructions from the deceased, the first question is whether the funeral will involve a burial or a cremation. Here are a few things you may want to consider.

Cremation

Some people prefer to have the entire funeral service conducted at the crematorium, while others would rather have a service elsewhere either before or after the cremation. We can work with you to design a funeral service that best suits your needs and wishes, whatever they may be.

Crematoria in the local area

There are 4 crematoriums in this area, in Southampton, Hedge End, Portchester and Havant.

Funeral services that take place in a crematorium have to be a specific length. The exact length of time available to you depends on which crematorium you choose.

Services at Portchester Crematorium generally last for 30 minutes, but they occasionally have some 45 minute bookings available; please let us know if that is something in which you might be interested and we can look into it for you.

Services at Southampton Crematorium, Wessex Vale Crematorium at Hedge End, and The Oaks Crematorium in Havant all last 45 minutes.

If you would like to have the entire funeral service at a crematorium you may also want to think about how many people you think will attend. For further information about the sizes of the chapels at the different crematoriums can be read here.

Ashes

Following the cremation, you will need to think about what you feel is the most appropriate resting place for the ashes. If you would like us to, we can collect the ashes from the crematorium for you.

It is possible to have your loved one’s ashes scattered in the grounds of the crematorium. Each of the crematoriums has a slightly different provision for this; please see the page for the crematorium in which you are interested for further information.

Some people, especially in this area, like to scatter the ashes at sea. Please talk to us if you feel that may be of interest. In these circumstances, we would recommend that you use a biodegradable paper urn, or pillow. When placed in water it will float briefly then sink to the bottom where it breaks down naturally over time. Please click here for further information about the Ashes Pillows.

Another option is to have the ashes interred in a churchyard or council run cemetery. In those circumstances we can supply you with an oak ashes casket, which we will fit with a brass name plate. This link will give you further information about the different urns available.

Should you wish to scatter the ashes, we can discuss the practical considerations involved. We also have a range of Scatter Tubes available.

Some families like to keep a small portion of the ashes, once the remainder has been scattered or interred. If you would like to know more about that, please ask us about the range of Keep Sake Urns which we can supply for that purpose.

Burial

In the past the majority of funerals were based around a burial, with the burial itself taking place in a Churchyard or, more recently, a council run cemetery.

Burials tend to be more expensive than cremations, since there is the cost of the purchase of a grave as well as the cost of the digging of the plot. Some local church cemeteries and council cemeteries are now full, however there are still many which have space for new burials and we have listed them below.

Your family may have already purchased a grave for another family member. If this was dug to a double depth we can arrange for this to be ‘re-opened’ for you and can help you apply for a change of ownership of the grave should that be relevant. We can also remove, renew or update any memorial.

New graves are generally dug to a depth that allows for two people to be buried in a single grave, although in cemeteries run by Southampton Council, it is possible to request that graves be dug to a triple depth should that be required.

You may want to consider purchasing an additional plot if you would like other family members to be buried close by.

If you choose a funeral based around a burial, the funeral service itself will normally take place in a local church or cemetery chapel, before a committal by the graveside but there are alternatives if the service is to be non-religious. Please speak to us if you would like further information about other possibilities.

Please click this link for information on which local cemeteries still have space available for burials in new plots.

For further information about cemeteries in this area please click here.

Another alternative which has become increasingly popular in recent years is a “Green” or “Woodland” burial.

Whether the funeral is to be a cremation or a burial we can help you to select a suitable coffin.  We will discuss the choices available when we meet to discuss the arrangements.  This meeting can take place at our premises, where we have a room set aside for this purpose, or in your own home at a time to suit you. We also offer appointments during the evenings and at weekends.

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