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Arrange the funeral

Using a funeral director

Funeral directors make arrangements for burials and cremations, and provide support and advice for people going through a bereavement.

A funeral director will:

  • arrange collection and storage of the person who has died
  • talk with bereavement services in the council for you
  • talk with the hospital and morgue for you
  • help you complete the forms you have to fill in
  • help you with arrangements
  • bring the coffin to the crematorium or chapel, and carry it in if you would like

They will discuss options with you, such as:

  • preparation of the body
  • where the funeral will take place
  • types of coffin
  • whether you want a burial or cremation
  • what sort of funeral you want, for example, if you would like a religious or non-religious funeral
  • transport of the coffin on the day of the funeral
  • the route of the funeral procession

The person who died may have discussed their wishes for their funeral, or left instructions in their will.

Funeral directors’ websites will give more details of what services they provide. They will also display their costs on their websites and in their windows.

You can change funeral directors if you want to.

Forms you will complete with the funeral director

There are different forms for burials and cremations.

The funeral director will know what forms you need to complete and help you to complete them.

Arranging the funeral yourself

You will need to complete a Notice of Interment form. You should call our cemeteries and crematoria contact number or email to request this form.

The contact number for all our cemeteries is: 0121 216 2000.

We will email or post the Notice of Interment form to you. You can also collect it from one of our offices in the Birmingham City Council cemeteries.

You should return the form by post, by email to or to the cemetery office in person.

You will need to:

  • arrange a place, such as a local morgue, to store the body of the person who has died
  • arrange a date and time with the cemetery or crematorium
  • transport the coffin to the cemetery or crematorium and have enough people to carry it in to the chapel
  • arrange all aspects of the funeral, including the service

If the person who has died owns a grave, you can follow the guidance in Burying in a grave. The process of arranging a burial is the same for both burying ashes and a coffin.

If you need to, you can buy a new grave plot.

Cemeteries and crematoria run by Birmingham City Council

We have crematoria at:

  • Yardley
  • Sutton Coldfield
  • Lodge Hill

We have cemeteries at:

  • Brandwood End
  • Handsworth
  • Kings Norton
  • Lodge Hill
  • Quinton
  • Sutton Coldfield
  • Sutton New Hall
  • Witton
  • Yardley

There is information about the services that each provides on our cemeteries and crematoria pages.

If you want to collect the ashes after cremation to scatter in another location, you or your funeral director should request a certificate of cremation.

You do not have to use a Birmingham City Council-run cemetery or crematorium. If you use a different cemetery or crematorium and then want to bury or scatter the ashes in a Birmingham City Council-run cemetery, you will need to show us the certificate of cremation.

Arranging the burial or scattering of ashes yourself

If the person who has died will be cremated, we have guidance on arranging the burial or scattering of ashes.


The length of time it takes for a funeral to happen after the registration of death can vary.

The average length of time is between 2 and 6 weeks.

If you need to arrange a quick funeral for religious or cultural reasons, you can contact our out-of-hours bereavement team.

Page last updated: 29 September 2023

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