Due to the coronavirus pandemic the following changes have been made to funeral arrangements in Merton:
- only immediate family are allowed to attend funerals within our cemeteries
- maximum of 20 immediate family may attend the grave side service
- chapel services are now available. The numbers that can attend are different for each chapel:
- London Road maximum of 12 people
- Merton and Sutton Joint Cemetry maximum of 20 people
- Gap Road is closed. When it reopens a maximum of 5 people will be allowed into the chapel.
- Excess mourners will have to stand outside at a distance. The above numbers exclude the person officiating the service.
We will follow
London's Funeral Standards
during the coronavirus pandemic.
Arranging a funeral
These are some things to consider when arranging a funeral:
- Do not make funeral arrangements until you are sure that the death does not have to be reported to the coroner, as this could affect the date when the funeral can be held.
- The deceased person may have left instructions in their will or a letter about their wishes.
- There may be an organ donor card or request for their body to be given for medical research.
- Check whether they had paid into a funeral plan to cover some or all of the costs.
- If there is no will or instructions the next of kin should decide what to do.
- If you arrange the funeral‚ you are responsible for paying the bill, so first check where the money will come from and whether it will be enough. Most funeral directors will wait until probate has been granted or funds are released from the deceased person's bank account.
Documents we need
You will need to give us a Certificate for Burial and Cremation and a Cemetery interment form.
Certificate for Burial and Cremation (the 'green form')
The registrar will issue this after the death is registered. This must be taken to the cemetery on the day of the funeral and handed to the Cemetery Supervisor and not sent to the cemeteries office. The original certificate must to taken with the coffin to the cemetery. If it is not produced at the cemetery then the burial cannot take place.
For short notice funerals and Muslim funerals we require the Certificate for Burial and Cremation before we will take a booking for a funeral; this must be emailed to
Cemetery interment form
This must be completed and delivered to us two clear working days before the burial.
Cemetery Interment Form
Most people require the funeral director to provide the following services as a minimum:
- arrange for burial or cremation as appropriate
- care for the deceased prior to the funeral
- make all the necessary arrangements
- provide appropriate staff
- provide a hearse to the nearest cemetery or crematorium
- provide a suitable coffin
- transfer the deceased from the place of death to the funeral director's premises.
Complaining about a funeral director
If you have a complaint and your funeral director belongs to either of the following trade associations they may be able to help you:
Undertakers are not required by law to obtain a license to practice their business and are not required to belong to a trade association. Under these circumstances if you dissatisfied with the service provided you may wish to contact our Trading Standards team.
To give dignity and respect to each funeral service we allow one and a half hours between each funeral, which allows each bereaved family time to grieve without the pressure of being rushed, either by staff or other funeral parties.
Muslim, Saturday and short notice funerals
We accommodate about 90% of short notice burials where all the necessary legal documentation is provided, subject to operational demands, ground conditions, time permitting and existing burials.
If a Saturday funeral is required please contact the Cemeteries Office as soon as possible. We only provide one burial time slot at 11am and which is straight to grave. Unfortunately we cannot guarantee to accommodate this
For a Saturday Muslim funeral arrangements must be made with the Cemeteries Office by 10am the previous day. Organisations dealing with a death must contact the cemetery office at the earliest possible opportunity to make sure that we can accommodate the funeral. This should be confirmed before any other arrangements are made, particularly in respect of contacting distant relatives.
Please do not contact the cemetery directly.
A surcharge is applied in accordance with our fee schedule for Saturday funerals.
We do not carry out funerals on Sundays or public holidays.
Gardens of Peace Muslim Cemetery
Getting quotes for funerals
Costs for the same service may vary considerably from one funeral director to another. You may wish to get more than one quote to compare costs. 'Disbursements' are fees paid to others for example:
- doctors' certificates
- newspaper announcements
Funeral payments are normally recoverable from the deceased's estate.
Get help paying for a funeral
If you are on a low income and need help to pay for a funeral you are arranging, you may be able to get a
If your husband, wife or civil partner dies you may be able to get Bereavement Support Payment.
Children’s Funeral Fund for England can help to pay for some of the costs of a funeral for a child under 18 or a baby stillborn after the 24th week of pregnancy.
If there is no next of kin
If there are no suitable funeral arrangements for the disposal of the deceased, the council will exercise its duty under Section 46 of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, to arrange for the deceased to be cremated or buried. This legislation allows for the recovery of expenses from the deceased's estate.
Organisations that can help
SANDS (Stillborn And Neonatal Death Society) offers support when a baby dies during pregnancy or after birth.
Tel: 020 3876 8806