What happens at a funeral

A funeral is a unique tribute to the life of an individual, so each one will be different, but on the day of a funeral they generally consist of five stages which we've detailed in this section.
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What to expect on the day of a funeral

The day of the funeral should be a time to say goodbye to your loved one without any distractions. There is no right or wrong way of doing it, but whether you’ve decided to have a cremation or burial, there are a few key moments to expect and prepare for a funeral, including:

Arrival of the hearse 

The funeral hearse will arrive at your home at an agreed time. If you have decided to have a flower or image arrangement this will be on display, providing a good opportunity to say a private goodbye, should you wish. A procession of cars or limousines, usually reserved for close family and friends, will follow behind the hearse to the funeral venue.

Arrival at the funeral venue

Upon arrival at the funeral venue, you will be greeted by a funeral director who will ensure everything runs as smoothly as possible. The role of the funeral director is to take the strain off you, so you have time to focus on the things that matter. 

The funeral procession

The funeral procession will start with pallbearers carrying the coffin into the venue, followed typically by next of kin, or close family. Pallbearers can also be close family or friends, with traditionally six people needed.


An Order of Service booklet will be provided to those attending the funeral, usually placed on their seats, helping to guide them on what will happen during the ceremony. This can be created with Tyde on our arrange a funeral page.

A celebrant will lead the ceremony, lasting around 30 minutes. During the ceremony, a eulogy is read of the life of your loved one - this can be carried out by the celebrant, member of the family or close friend. This is also a moment for tributes, be that though hymns, anecdotes, readings, or music.

After the ceremony, a committal service will take place, where your loved one will be taken to either be cremated or buried.

The wake

The wake follows the ceremony and is a more informal environment to share stories and celebrate the life of the person that died. This is often held at a venue or sometimes at a family home. Some people choose to keep this more low-key, while others opt for a livelier celebration with entertainment and music. Ultimately, it comes down to personal choice and the wishes of your loved one.

Whichever direction you decide for the day, we can help remove the hassle of planning. We provide options that allow you to fully customise the funeral to ensure it is the celebration you and your loved one would have wated – whether that’s a direct cremation or an attended service.

Our simple booking process and itemised pricing allows you to keep within your budget and plan a send-off that feels right to you.

Visit the Arrange Now section on our website to see what options are available and to find out how we can help.

Still a little unsure about what happens at a funeral? Pick up the phone by dialling 0333 444 2211 or email support@tyde.co.

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