West Midlands revealed as the most expensive area in the UK to have a funeral

Thousands of people have to organise a funeral every year in the UK, and for most it’s a stressful enough time without the various costs associated with saying goodbye to a loved one. In fact a report found that from 2004 to 2017, funeral costs increased by a staggering 112%, more than house prices, weekly wages and petrol*.  

Understandably, ‘funeral poverty’ has been widely discussed in the news, and the Scottish government has even introduced a new fund to help low income families with funeral costs, available as of next week. To shed some more light on the cost of funerals, we looked at more than 500,000 funeral service prices across the UK from 2015, to find out what the average cost is depending on where you are in the UK. 

Our research delved into prices from a multitude of services needed for organising a funeral or wake, such as; hearse and car hire, funeral director costs, solicitors fees, coffin costs, catering, florists, gravestone engraving, and venue hire. We did not take into account burial plot costs. 

We weren’t sure what to expect from our analysis, however, were surprised to find out that prices vary massively depending on where in the country you are. West Midlands was revealed as the most expensive place in the UK to have a funeral, followed by Greater London and Hampshire. Yorkshire was revealed as the cheapest, followed by Lancashire and Cornwall.

The ten most expensive counties in the UK to hold a funeral, along with the average cost, are as follows:

  1. West Midlands – £6,450
  2. Greater London – £6,200
  3. Hampshire – £5,803
  4. Surrey – £5,575
  5. Cambridgeshire – £5,300
  6. Bedfordshire – £5,235
  7. Midlothian – £5,182
  8. Gloucestershire – £4,975
  9. Cumbria – £4,950
  10. Pembrokeshire – £4,711

The ten cheapest counties in the UK to hold a funeral, along with the average cost, are as follows:

  1. Yorkshire – £2,768
  2. Lancashire – £2,732
  3. Cornwall – £2,945
  4. Cheshire – £2,970
  5. Aberdeenshire – £3,010
  6. Middlesex – £3,450
  7. Northumberland – £3,605
  8. Isle of Wight – £3,789
  9. Suffolk – £3,795
  10. Lincolnshire – £3,804

Kai Feller, Bark.com co-founder, said,

“Having to organise a funeral is never going to be a nice job, and for many across the UK finding the funds to do so can be extremely stressful – particularly when you’re grieving. So, we wanted to highlight the varying costs across the UK, so people are aware how much a funeral will likely set them back depending on their location.”



Can you plan your Wedding with Bark?

My wife reminded me the other day that it’s coming up to our 4th anniversary and I got to thinking how much easier planning a wedding would have been if Bark.com had existed.

I thought I’d take a look at the categories on Bark to ensure we have everything needed to ensure couple’s special day goes off without a hitch.

Wedding Catering

It’s vital to have the right catering for guests. Many may have travelled for hours to the venue, waited for the bride, sat through the ceremony, drank the welcome Champagne or Bucks Fizz and be starving by the time food is served. Often a round of canapés after the ceremony while the couple is having their pictures taken is a good idea, followed by the wedding breakfast and whether it’s buffet style or a 3 course silver service meal we can help you choose the best caterers from over 35,000 available.

Wedding Decorations

Often weddings will have a theme – mine was “red” but I’ve heard things like “Frozen”, “flowers” or even “Places we’ve been”. If you’re like me and have the creative flair of a mole then you may need a professional to help bring your vision to life. I’ve seen some fantastic examples at the weddings I’ve been to (I’m at that part of my life where it’s a few weddings every Summer) and some of them must have had professional decorating help from one of the 1500 Wedding Decorators or 1000+ Florists Bark can connect you with.

Wedding Bouquet, Wedding Flowers

Wedding Photographer & Videography

One of the best bits of advice given to me was not to scrimp on a wedding photographer and to do some test shoots to see who made you feel most comfortable and therefore got the best shots. I’m so glad we did as the photographer we ended up choosing was just awesome and we were so happy with the eventual pictures. If we ever have a renewal of vows party I’ll either use the same one again or choose from one of the 1000s of expert Wedding Photographers on Bark.

Increasingly couples are using videographers to capture the day and use it to send to relatives around the world who can’t be there in person or to keep for when you’re older to remind you of how slim you were once. Fortunately you can make sure you’re only captured from the best angle by choosing from one of almost 4000 Videographers Bark can connect you with.

Wedding Cakes

The centre piece of the Wedding Breakfast and generally cutting it is the cue to start dancing like a crazy family. Getting the right cake maker can cost a few hundred to a few thousand pounds, but it’s worth it for the intricate icing work and attention to detail you can get. Many cakes are then personalised to the couple – I recall one of my friends having the bride and groom figures in a Costa mug (where they met) and with my own Cake we’d secretly arranged for the colours of the Mauritian Flag to be layered through the top tier in honour of my wife’s family – quite a surprise when it was cut. Bark wasn’t around then so we found Magical Cakery through a friend but if Bark were around we’d have had a choice of over 500 wedding cake makers

Wedding Cake

Dance Lessons

I can’t dance – everyone knows it. That made it really awkward when I had to dance with my new bride in front of all my friends and family and ended up looking like a demented octopus. If this is you too you could either ensure the videographer’s gone home, ban videos and hope your friends and family have had too much of the wine you paid for to remember, or you could use Bark to get some dance lessons and come out looking awesome. If your wedding is very traditional you could even go for Ballroom Dance Lessons.

Wedding Band or DJ

Whether it’s a band for the ceremony, a classy String Quartet or an evening DJ for helping your family cast some shapes on the dance floor Bark can help find that too. As a little tip ensure you order an extra meal for the band members and the DJ – always makes them feel good, doesn’t cost too much, and you’ll get a better service from them too.

Wedding Planning

Bark can take the pain out of finding the best local wedding suppliers and leave you in control of coordinating the gig. If you want even that taken care of, and let’s face it there is a lot to do, then we can also find you a Wedding Planner from the 6000+ we have available.

And so much more

There’s so much more Bark can help with too from designing and printing the invitations to engraving the rings to hiring transport for the day – I’m exhausted just thinking about all the work I did for my wedding and wish Bark was around to do the leg work for me back then.

Wedding Car

What do you think? Have I missed anything off that helps make the perfect Wedding? Let us know.

Author: John Oberlin-Harris