'Am I wrong going to my brother's funeral?' Bereaved caller tells of rules confusion

2 November 2020, 16:29

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

'Am I doing wrong in going to my brother's funeral' - this caller told LBC she was confused around the rules which would impact her attending a funeral.

"My dilemma is I have a funeral to go to in Hertfordshire next Wednesday," but the caller said "I shouldn't go, should I?"

This caller asked LBC's Shelagh Fogarty if her daughter was allowed to drive to Lincolnshire to pick her up to drive to the funeral.

"How do I go?" She asked questioning what the rules were after the Prime Minister announced a new set of national Covid restrictions across England.

The caller said she would not even be able to stay overnight in a hotel, which Shelagh confirmed.

When Shelagh asked if it was possible for the caller to do the journey in one day the answer was that she was worried about "doing wring by mixing with people when they're saying you shouldn't mix."

Shelagh pointed out that there are certain exemptions for funerals with the person organising it having to limit places.

Funerals will be limited to a maximum of 30 people, although it is advised that only close family members attend. Headstone settings and the scattering of ashes should have no more than 15 people.

According to new Government guidance, places of worship will be closed from Thursday, unless they are being used for funerals, individual prayer, formal childcare or other essential voluntary and public services such as support groups.

Earlier on Monday Canon Michael Smith, canon pastor at York Minster, said people coping with bereavement this year have been severely challenged by the constraints of the coronavirus pandemic.

"The death of a loved one - whenever it occurs - is one of life's most difficult moments," he said.

"In normal circumstances, we can comfort the dying, support each other in our grief and gather to share our memories and to say goodbye."

He said: "Lockdown, social distancing and self-isolation prevented many people from being with their loved ones in their last days.

"Continuing limits on funerals and gatherings have made it all but impossible for individuals and communities to come together to remember and celebrate their dead.

"There is a great deal of unresolved grief as a result of these harrowing circumstances."