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Here at Newrest Funerals, we are here to offer advice on any sort of funeral you would like to conduct in the UK. As such, one of the questions we are often asked is whether or not it would be possible to arrange sea burial services. The answer to this simple enquiry is yes. We can help you to arrange a burial at sea either because you think this is the sort of send-off that your deceased loved one would have liked or because they’ve left instructions in their will to that effect. We have the know-how to help with all kinds of burial at sea services whether or not your loved one had an association with the sea, such as being a former mariner. What’s involved?

Administrative Issues

To begin with, we can help you to obtain the license that will be needed for a burial at sea. This is obtained from the Marine Management Organisation and we’ll guide you through the process, making sure that you have the necessary supporting paperwork, such as a death certificate and an official ‘freedom from fever and infection’ notification. In England, a coroner’s notice is needed before burial at sea services can proceed, something that we also can guide you with.

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Locations For Burials at Sea

There are three areas set aside for sea burial services in the UK. Two are in the south of England while there is only one in the north, located at Tynemouth. If you want to choose a location outside of one of these designated locations, then let us know. We can still help you but it is worth noting that there will be more paperwork to complete and further charges from the authorities are likely to apply.

On-Board and On-Shore Services

With the licenses in place for a burial at sea, you can proceed with the service arrangements. Hiring a boat is usual, of course, but this doesn’t mean the service needs to be held on board. We can help you to find a suitable funeral venue nearby so that the time spent on the water is minimised. Many burial at sea services are preceded by hymns, eulogies and readings on land beforehand but this is not the only option.

Coffin Considerations

Note that coffins that are used for sea burial services won’t be standard ones. They must be weighted in a certain way so they don’t bob about or flip over when they are committed to the waves, for example. In addition, certain materials that might be harmful to the marine environment are not allowed. You will also need holes in the coffin into which seawater can flood, helping it to sink to the bottom of the sea.

Scattering Cremated Remains at Sea

Finally, you can ask us about what is involved with a seaborne service after a cremation. This can be a good option if you want to keep the cost down with a burial at sea or the deceased asked for a cremation before having their remains committed to the deep.

Feel free to call us to discuss sea burial services in the UK or to put any questions you might have about them to one of our caring advisors.