Scottish Government is introducing a statutory Code of Practice, an inspection programme and a licensing scheme for funeral businesses as part of a regulatory framework to ensure high standards of service. They’ll be working on implementation over 2019/20. In their consultation and investigation they drew an interesting parallel comparing the funeral parlour business model and […]
It was a privilege this weekend to be invited up on the stage at the Scottish Funeral Awards 2019 to hand out shiny trophies to honour great work going on across Scotland. 22 different categories celebrated the work of funeral directors north, south, east and west along with all the essentials that we associate with […]
I was delighted to take part in a panel discussion during the Edinburgh Festival this week chaired by Alex Mascolo on the publication of her research into how women are working to create a more death-literate Scotland. 30-40 people joined us and the chat was much like a death cafe… wide-ranging, open, quickly deep and […]
On Friday 2 August, it was judgement day for Scotland’s funeral industry – literally. A team of judges were locked in a city centre hotel room throughout the long, hot, sunshine-filled day, pouring over piles of anonymised paperwork to debate views and arrive at decisions for the new Scottish Funeral Awards 2019. It was heads […]
Our chums at Good Life Good Death Good Grief have another year’s death inspired programme coming up at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Top of the pile for me, on 5 August is doctor/writer Kathryn Mannix, sharing her wisdom with readings from her book With The End in Mind. If you ever wanted comfort that you […]
This week, Perthshire school teacher Richard Selley called on the Scottish Parliament to move towards legalising assisted dying. Richard is living with Motor Neurone Disease or MND. There’s no way back for him. Like others in his shoes, he’s making plans to travel to Dignitas in Switzerland to take what little control he can and […]
Scottish Government is carrying out a consultation on funerals to try to tighten up on behaviours and standards in the industry. Responses are invited by 20 September 2019. The Government team invited views from funeral directors and others associated with funerals as a kicking off point and have come up with a draft Code of […]
It’s always a moment of joy for me when I see a note from my friends Sue Gill and Gilly Adams that they have another Rites of Passage school coming up. And every time, I want to go play again. I trained with Sue and Gilly back in the day when rites of passage were […]
Our lovely friends Jimmy Edmonds and Jane Harris are going from strength to strength with their inspiring Good Grief project. Jimmy and Jane have produced a film A Love That Never Dies to help share experiences of what it is to lose a child. At their recent screening of the film in Preston, they had […]
Are you aware of the new Funeral Expense Assistance benefit being introduced in Scotland? It’s part of new Social Security changes. Shortened to FEA benefit, this was put before the Scottish Parliament on 18 February 2019 and it’s due to launch in summer 2019, replacing the current Funeral Expenses Payment. Here’s what Scottish Government tell us about the new benefit. “Arranging […]
So… have you been caught up in the new-year-new-me frenzy created Marie Kondo’s best-selling book, The Magic of Tidying. If so, maybe, like me, you’ve found yourself folding t-shirts into small little stand-up packages and enjoying every minute of your new-found control, discipline and mindfulness.
What’s the connection between Day of the Dead, Hallowe’en and death?
Day of the Dead is a Mexican festival to remember and celebrate our loved and lost. Making offerings at shrines, grave tending, sharing food and storytelling are all part of the ritual, designed to help heal and remember. Hallowe’en is
How on earth does anyone survive the loss of a child?
The feature film A Love That Never Dies, on release at selected independent cinemas this month, shares how some parents have coped.
I’m wondering today when we might get to a point of providing clearer and louder support for dying, not just bereavement.
Here’s an update on childhood bereavement support in Scotland.
5 out of every 100 children in the UK lose a parent by the time they reach 16. That’s around 4,600 children in Scotland who will experience a parent’s death every year.
An awareness-raising week is nothing without a good hashtag – so get ready for #GoodDeathWeek #WhatCanYouDo next week: 14-20 May.
Three things yesterday – a conversation, an interaction and a presentation – yesterday made me wonder why we don’t talk more about death workers.
At the Everyday Compassion conference in Glasgow yesterday, Kerrie Noonan from Australia’s Groundswell Project sought me out to tell me she’s a fan of Fling. We chatted about what we both do… rogue death champions, working outside the system (mostly).
Kerrie said she prefers to use the term death workers for the likes of us and all the people she encounters in various end-of-life roles.
This week I’m talking at an end of life conference about designing compassion into services. The conference is Everyday Compassion: Supportive responses to dying and bereavement by schools, neighbourhoods and workplaces.
I was thrilled to meet Kathryn Mannix in Glasgow at Aye Write book festival where she was talking in her gentle, wise voice about living with the end in mind. The audience hung on her every word as she shared the years of knowledge and experience she has built up as a palliative care specialist, […]
Friend of Final Fling, artist Gina Czarnecki, is chuffed that her plan to commission 25 coffins to inspire thinking about death has been funded, thanks to Arts Council England & Lottery Ticket-buyers.