Sadly, due to the current restrictions, funerals may now only happen at the Crematorium or at the graveside. Only immediate family members can attend (if the crematorium allows) – that is, spouse or partner, parents and children, keeping their distance in the prescribed way (this is true also for burial of ashes). No wake or gathering should be held following the funeral, and this should be scheduled for a later date. We recognise how difficult this will be for many and add to the pain of a loss. You may wish to discuss with the Rector the possibility of a memorial service at a date in the future where more people can be present.
Anyone who at the time of their death was resident in the Camelot Parishes is entitled to have a funeral in church whether or not he or she was a regular churchgoer. Sometimes, we are asked to conduct funerals in one of the Camelot churches where the deceased was not resident in the Parishes but had some form of connection or had expressed a wish for the funeral service to take place here. Although we cannot make any promises, we will always consider such requests sympathetically and will seek where appropriate to respond to them positively.
We also conduct funerals at local crematoria on the same basis.
Normally, the first step in arranging a funeral is for the local Funeral Director to contact us and to arrange a suitable date and time on which both the minister who is to take the service and the church (if this is to be used) are available. We will then contact the family to arrange a visit and to discuss the required form of service.
Funerals can be taken either by clergy or by Readers (please see Camelot Ministers for details).
Whether the funeral takes place in church or in a crematorium the form of the service we use is the one set out for us by the Church of England (we can use either Common Worship or the Book of Common Prayer for this purpose). However, we recognise the importance of a funeral service also having a personal feel and so very often tributes from family members (which can be read either by them or by the minister in charge) together with personal items such as poems and music are included.
The Church of England website gives useful further information and resources on funerals including model forms of service.
Most of the Camelot churchyards are open for further burials. Anyone who at the time of their death was resident in the Camelot Parishes is entitled to be buried in the churchyard if this is still open whether or not he or she was a regular churchgoer.
Those on the electoral roll of a Camelot church also have the right to be buried in an open churchyard even if they were not at the time of their death resident in the Camelot Parishes.
There is also a discretion to allow burial in an open churchyard where the deceased had strong connections with the parish in question but was not actually resident there at the time of death. We will seek to exercise this discretion pastorally and sympathetically but at the same time it must be remembered that this discretion is very much an exception to the rule and only to be exercised sparingly. Given that space is limited we have to give proper consideration to the interests of current and future residents of the village who may wish to be buried in the churchyard. Some of the Parochial Church Councils (‘PCCs’) of the Camelot Group have made special regulations in this respect and these are available on request from the relevant churchwardens.
If a non-resident wishes to have the right to be buried in one of the Camelot churchyards then the procedure is first to approach the Rector and ask him to place this request before the Parochial Church Council (‘PCC’) for approval. The applicant will need to contact the Diocesan Registry to obtain a formal questionnaire and application for what is known as a faculty and there is a fee payable for this. The ultimate decision as to whether or not to grant the faculty lies in the hands of the Chancellor who is the chief legal officer for the Diocese. Subject to this, notice of the application is displayed for a period of time and the Registry then issues the faculty which gives the legal right to a particular designated place within the churchyard.
Very often, families will want to place a permanent memorial stone in the churchyard in memory of their loved one. It is normal to wait for a period of at least six months before applying to place a memorial stone so as to allow the ground to settle.
We are governed in the type and size of memorial stones that we are able to approve by the Churchyard Rules issued by the Diocesan Registrar. The latest copy of these Rules can be downloaded below:
All Soul’s Day Service
On the first Sunday of November we celebrate All Soul’s Day and hold a 4.00pm service at St Michael’s, North Cadbury at which we particularly remember those whom we have lost, whether recently or longer ago.
Remembrance Day Service
We also of course have Remembrance Day services to remember those who have died as a result of war and details of these services can be found in the Camelot Worship section under seasonal celebrations.
1 John 4:16: “We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love.
God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.”