At the heart of our ethos is a desire to help families to have a beautiful, unique and fitting farewell for their loved one. The farewell can be full of love, pride and even hope as well as acknowledging the sadness of your loss.
I first became involved with funerals in 1995. Whilst nursing my terminally ill mum Zoë, I began, at her request, to look into options for her funeral.
When the time came I was able to wash and dress my mum myself, friends made her coffin and we held her funeral in a thatched barn. Zoë then had one of the first burials in a newly opened woodland burial ground with a hawthorn tree planted on her grave.
We found that by being fully involved in the entire process and having a very personal funeral in a venue where we could take our time was a cathartic experience. Friends and family used their own skills to make, speak, carry, create and cook.
It was a wonderful day, full of sadness but with great love and pride too. It helped us all immensely. I went on to train to be a funeral director in 1996 with the funeral pioneers Peace Funerals, working in London and Sheffield. I set up Natural Endings in Manchester in 2005 and since then have gathered some great people to help me.
A reflection of a person’s life
We are all individuals. As such a funeral service should reflect the loves, achievements and things that made a person who they were.
Natural Endings provide a personal service that includes taking time to gain an understanding of you and your family’s values and beliefs and what is important to you.
We ensure that the things that shaped you are incorporated into the funeral and the service. Music, hobbies, interests, poems, colours, beliefs, values, the things that you treasure. The way that you lived your life should be reflected in your funeral.
We welcome diversity and feel that we are inclusive of different families and communities needs. Though death and loss are natural parts of our lives they can often be painful and confusing. We hope to help you to navigate this difficult time with compassion and humanity. We believe that growing to accept a loss and reflecting on someone’s life is a gradual process. The time leading up to the funeral and the funeral itself are an important part of this process.
Collaborating with you
We work closely with you and can either fulfil your ideas or offer appropriate suggestions for creating a funeral that reflects your person’s unique personality.
We are one of the founding members of the Association of Green Funeral Directors we’re recognised experts in green funerals and natural woodland burial. we also arrange cremation and at the end of the year we hope to offer resomations (also known as water cremation). We work with many funeral leaders from all faiths and non-religious ones. They vary a lot in character and approach so we try and find one that’s the right fit for you. We feel like we have a good hit rate with finding the right person for you! You might feel like you’d like something more informal. We also regularly support families to lead their own service and love to see what they create.
As well as arranging funeral ceremonies in churches and places of worship we are able to offer a choice of non-religious venues for a funeral ceremony. We have arranged funerals in a barn, pub, art studio, cinema, families own homes and gardens and even a sports stadium. More recently we are very pleased to offer our own ceremony space for a funeral.
At your convenience
We can do as much or as little as you need. It might be helpful for you to be very hands-on using your own skills and creativity. We love to see what you bring. Or perhaps if you’re feeling overwhelmed you would like us to listen to what you need and then take care of everything for you.
We understand that lives are busy at this time and that there is lots to do. Therefore we can visit you at home, if you wish, to take arrangements and give you a no-commitment estimate. Or if it suits you better you can make an appointment to come and see us.
I have appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and contribute to broadsheet articles, and to BBC Online.
I am always happy to answer your questions and help if I can.
Even if you’re not in my region of Manchester, Cheshire, South Lancashire and West Yorkshire please contact me if you have a question relating to funerals.
Rosie Inman-Cook; Manager of The Natural Death Centre
Jo Bayly & Lindsay Parish, Bowdon
If you have had a bereavement and would like to talk to someone about funeral arrangements,
please call our 24 hour numbers –
0161 969 6690 – for South Manchester and Cheshire
01706 941757 – for Todmorden, South Lancashire and Calderdale
We are happy to discuss your requirements and provide you with a no-commitment estimate of costs.Contact us