Elvis Presley: Fans gather at Graceland for funeral in 1977

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The British funeral has been transformed over the past few years and requests for ‘happy funerals’ are rising. Phrases like ‘a celebration of life’ are cropping up now more than ever, the general tone is seen as more uplifting, the music is sillier and the clothes are brighter.

Co-op Funeralcare revealed the 10th most requested funeral songs of 2019 was Monty Python’s ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ along with classics like Frank Sinatra’s My Way and Robbie Williams’ Angels.

Another report by Co-op Funeralcare found that 74 percent of their funeral directors had requests for personalised, unique floral tributes within a service, and 64 percent were asked to arrange personalised coffins. Some people have requested rainbow and even leopard print coffins! 

Sarah Jones of Full Circle Funerals says she has seen a big rise in happy funerals and even a bit of fancy dress.

She said: “We have supported families who have chosen to have live music performances and dancing, invited people to attend in fancy dress and where guests have been invited to share a joke and enjoy a performance by a magician.

“The possibilities are endless and it is a real privilege to help people create a funeral that really reflects the personality and values of the person who has died.

“We encourage people to think about the tone of the funeral that they are creating. Some people would prefer it to be relatively serious and understated whereas others really want to create an uplifting, energetic and more celebratory event.”

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Following the rise of happy funerals, if you really want to ‘go out with a bang’, some people are choosing ‘cremation fireworks’ which contain an amount of your loved one’s ashes so that you can send them off in style.

In a testimonial for Dynamic Fireworks, one customer said: “I would just like to say a massive thank you to all the staff at Heavenly Stars Fireworks. We said goodbye to my partner in true style, his children thought it was the best send off. Something we will always remember for the rest of our lives.”

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