What is Direct Cremation?

Direct cremation is incredibly simple. It involves the funeral director taking a body into their care, completing the necessary paperwork. The cremation takes place at a time of the crematoriums choosing. There is no service, the ashes are returned to the family by the funeral director.

Because there is no service either at a crematorium or in a cemetery (there is no cortege etc.) and thus no additional fees this is the most cost effective way to cremate a body.

The advantages with direct cremation are cost, choice, and time. For families who elect this route they are avoiding the 20-30 minute service at the crematorium or long service in a cemetery.

They are empowered to choose how, when, and how long ‘their’ commemorative service should be.

Some facts about direct cremation:

  • It’s for those who don’t need for a formal, public funeral where the coffin is present i.e. a traditional cemetery burial
  • It is less expensive than a traditional funeral. The average price of a funeral according to researchers (*) is £3,800. We estimate the average cost of a direct cremation is close to £1,700.
  • Many, but certainly not all funeral directors offer direct or simple cremation options. We would discourage you from working with a funeral director who doesn’t respect your wishes, and might suggest the ‘direct’ route is somewhat disrespectful.
  • Direct Cremation empowers the family with choice, and most importantly time.
  • Direct Cremation is not a standardized term, it is often called Simple Cremation.


What is included?

  • Collection of the deceased (be aware of any distance limitations or out of hours costs).
  • Care of the deceased at the funeral home
  • Simple coffin (no choice)
  • Transport to the crematorium (no choice)
  • Doctors and Crematorium fee (you will need to see the funeral director to complete paperwork)
  • Return of the ashes (check with the funeral director)

What’s not included?

  • Out of hours collection – Check with the funeral director
  • Dressing of the deceased
  • Viewing of the deceased
  • No ceremony or mourners at the crematorium.

(*) Average cost taken from: Royal London National Funeral Cost Index Report 2016 and Sun Life Cost of Dying survey 2016

Here at Willow Row barrow we have witnessed the most intimate, beautiful ceremonies where families and friends have created a personalised way of beginning their commemorative journey and ultimate celebration of life when placing ashes into a niche.

When ashes are ‘placed’ into your niche in the barrow there are no time constraints, just a unique private location to do what feels ‘right’ to celebrate someone’s life.

A placement into a niche within a barrow is often referred to as an up-lifting, powerful and positively moving experience.