Fewer than half (47 per cent) of respondents to a new poll say that they would like a funeral.
The poll of 2569 was commissioned by the thinktank Theos and carried out by YouGov in July. The authors of Theos’s report on the polling, Love, Grief, and Hope: Emotional responses to death and dying in the UK, Madeleine Pennington and Nathan Mladin, speak of a “significant realignment in British grieving practices”. They warn of the potential for a “significant pastoral gap left in the wake of a decline in formal funeral ceremonies”, and that funerals could become a “luxury or niche requirement for a few”….
In total, 24 per cent of respondents said that they did not want a funeral, while 28 per cent were not sure or did not know. Financial factors influenced the responses: 13 per cent of respondents who did not want a funeral said that this was because they did not have enough money saved.
The commonest response was: “I think the money could be better spent another way” (67 per cent); followed by “I don’t see the point” (55 per cent); and “I don’t want a traditional service” (43 per cent).
We get a lot of polling around religious affiliation and attendance. This @Theosthinktank one on public’s attitudes to death and funerals feels very significant. Fewer than half want a funeral with 55% of those who don’t citing ‘I don’t see the point’ https://t.co/C9nI2JZF54
— Madeleine Davies (@MadsDavies) November 28, 2023