The last edition of our funeral plan blog starts with the Modern era of mourning and their ideas for funeral plans
It seems, that the Victorians were extremely well-prepared when it came to funeral arrangements, but something changed between the end of the 19th century and the beginning of a new millennium.
We no longer routinely set aside money for funerals. We no longer plan ahead. Why?
The twentieth century brought the two most devastating wars the world has ever seen and with these conflicts, society’s way of thinking about death and remembrance was turned on its head.
Post-war commemorative culture drew on the opposite of the Victorians, silence and simplicity came in.
The war lead in a period of ‘invisible’ death whereby the death was removed from the domestic society and moved into hygienic and controlled environments, such as the hospital.
Death, although always feared, now became something so terrible it could not be talked about, let alone planned for.
This trend of suppressing conversations about death was continued into the 21st century, thanks to medical advances that removed death from the home. This could have had a negative impact on how we cope with death and plan for it. We are now distanced from dying by medical advances; our denial of death is accompanied by denial of mourning.
Perhaps because of the way we now think about death, there has been a move away from planning ahead.
People began to build up the idea that talking about death was bad, that dwelling on the future was counterproductive or ‘morbid’, and that attitude stays with us even today. If we can’t talk about death, it logically follows that we will be unable to plan for it properly.
In addition, post-war generations began to experience economic growth, increased disposable income and improved living conditions.
It seemed that the financial need for funeral plans or funeral insurance had waned. If planning for death was seen as both unpleasant and unnecessary, why do it?
However, as you may have noticed, the cost of funerals and our attitudes towards death are coming into the spotlight once again, particularly in the mainstream media. We now live in a time of austerity, when planning ahead financially is essential. We are now recognising that ignoring death until the last minute is, unfortunately, impractical.
As a result, the number of people investing in funeral plans and other types of financial products is increasing.
Guilds and burial clubs may have died out in the UK, but the funeral plan is a modern way of securing the cost of your funeral. By paying in instalments – or all in one go – you can effectively pre-pay for your funeral and in doing so make sure your funeral is just how you would want it to be.
With the ever growing blended family, this is sure to be a help at what can be a extremely emotional time. A funeral plan, along with your wishes can take away many decisions from a grieving family and put your decisions into the hands of a funeral director to directly arrange.
In essence, it’s a practice that’s almost as old as funeral history, and it remains a cost-effective way of securing your final farewell.