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Holding Your Hands Every Step of the Way

A new poll by a provider of funeral plans in the UK has unveiled that only 31% of eulogies at funerals are read by a family member, with more than half of those who wouldn’t be prepared to read a eulogy fearing that they would not be able to keep their composure.

New research from a UK provider of funeral plans has revealed that only a third of eulogies at funerals are performed by a family member; with 55% of those who would opt out of reading a family member’s eulogy stating that they wouldn’t be able to keep their composure.

The research, conducted by, polled 1,908 British adults, all of whom were aged 18 or over. Participants were questioned about their attitudes to funeral planning and finances and all respondents had been to a funeral within the past two years.

Those taking part were asked “Who performed the eulogy at the last funeral you attended?” 53% said that the eulogy was conducted by an officiator/priest, 31% stated that it was performed by a family member of the deceased and 16% stated that the eulogy was performed by a friend of the person who had passed away.

The survey then asked all participants whether they would consider reading the eulogy at a family member’s funeral if they were asked. 35% stated that they would, with the majority of these (56%) stating that they would be honoured to be asked. 6% stated that they weren’t sure what they would do, as it depended on who the person was and the remaining 59% stated that they would not be prepared to read a eulogy.

The survey then asked all those who said that they would not read the eulogy at a family member’s funeral to provide their reasoning for their answer. Respondents were able to select all answers they felt were applicable, which yielded the below top five:

  1. Unsure if I could keep my composure – 55%
  2. Afraid of public speaking – 43%
  3. Believe it is best left to the officiator/priest – 31%
  4. Wouldn’t know what to say – 27%
  5. Not close to family, but would attend the funeral – 9%

Finally, the survey then asked all those who said they would not be able to keep their composure, whether they would be happy to author the eulogy instead, so that they had their personal touch on the ceremony. 25% stated that they would not, with the majority of these (63%) stating they did not believe they could do it justice. 10% said that they were not sure and 65% said that they would be prepared to write the eulogy.

Ian Hazel from Ian Hazel Funerals, a local independent funeral director based in Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield said: “A eulogy is almost always an extremely personal and emotive piece that can stir the emotions of the family, friends and well wishers who are in attendance, so it is not a surprise that so many people feel like they would be unable to keep their composure. What is important to remember is that even if delivering the eulogy is not something you feel you can do, helping to compose the text for another individual to deliver can be just as important and make sure that a family member’s final farewell is filled with as many positive and memorable tales and anecdotes as possible. This will make for a much more personal ceremony.”

About Perfect Choice Funeral Plans
Perfect Choice Funeral Plans are provided by NAFD Services Limited which was set-up by the National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD) whose member firms carry out over 80% of all funerals in the UK. NAFD Services Limited is a founding member of the Funeral Planning Authority, the official body that oversees the operation of companies offering funeral plans.

Perfect Choice Funeral Plan funds are held securely in a guaranteed whole of life assurance policy. For maximum security NAFD Services only works with UK-based life assurance companies that are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and regulated by the PRA and Financial Conduct Authority. A key difference with Perfect Choice Funeral Plans is that the pre-payment monies cannot be used for anything other than the client’s funeral for total peace of mind.

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