Our fourth year

Every funeral we arrange is naturally different in response to a family’s needs and expectations. This year we’ve helped to create a private, family-led grave side service at Makara Natural Burial cemetery with a magnificent clarinet recital by a grandson, followed by a picnic in the cemetery grounds.

We have organised a funeral for 600+ attendees with another 200 watching live-stream around the country while other families have preferred to keep things simple with a direct cremation and a memorial service in their own time and space.

More of our families are opting for evening funerals. We observe that these events tend to be well attended and more relaxed, as people are less distracted by work and time constraints. The after-match gathering can go well into the night, then close family reconvene the next day for a private cremation or burial.

Occasionally our working relationship extends beyond the immediate family to the deceased’s workplace. They express their desire to contribute in some way to the funeral. With the family’s approval this support has ranged from providing the venue, hosting and catering the after-match event or contributing financially. This offers an important opportunity for their colleagues to actively and positively acknowledge their loss.

This year we have worked on a joint project with TaylorMade coffins in the Wairarapa, creating the ‘babypod’ coffin. The curved design encourages parents to naturally cradle their baby. It can be gently rocked enabling the family to continue to parent and be connected after death.

The New Zealand funeral industry has received some media attention recently – particularly with the Burial & Cremation Act 1964 Review report being published at the end of October. One hundred and twenty seven recommendations have been made to the out dated act including: streamlining paper based administrative systems to online, loosening the restrictions of burying on private rural land and the suggested nomination of a deceased’s representative to take care of the funeral wishes.

We fully support this open discussion about funerals – we have been invited to talk to stakeholders, businesses and community groups. Our website is a useful resource for those researching and planning and we encourage you to have that conversation with family or legal advisor. Feel free to contact us, without obligation with any questions you may have.

We would like to thank the families who have entrusted us to take care of another family member. Thank you also to those who have recommended Broadbent & May to family, friends or colleagues. We appreciate your support and endorsement.