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Coronavirus: Demand for live-streaming funerals set to increase


Boris Johnson

Coronavirus: Demand for live-streaming funerals set to increase

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Martin Rowley said his firm would continue holding funeral services unless ordered not to A funeral director says he expects a surge in demand for cremation services to be streamed online during the coronavirus outbreak.Martin Rowley said he anticipates “a lot of interest” in the option after Boris Johnson…

Coronavirus: Demand for live-streaming funerals set to increase

A coffinImage copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Martin Rowley said his firm would continue holding funeral services unless ordered not to

A funeral director says he expects a surge in demand for cremation services to be streamed online during the coronavirus outbreak.

Martin Rowley said he anticipates “a lot of interest” in the option after Boris Johnson urged people to avoid gatherings with friends and family.

Mr Rowley said his York-based business would waive the cost of showing services online.

The government has not yet ordered a stop to funerals, he said.

Image copyright
Google

Image caption

York Crematorium is already equipped with the ability to live-stream funerals over the internet

Many crematoriums around the country are equipped with facilities to broadcast funerals over the internet via a secure login.

Online streams are used by mourners living abroad or those who are unable to leave their homes.

However, social distancing and self-isolation could see more people take up this option.

Image copyright
Rowley and Sons

Image caption

Mr Rowley (left) said he there were good hand washing facilities at his chapel of rest

Mr Rowley said he plans to waive the £62 live-streaming charge during the coronavirus outbreak.

He said: “In the current crisis, we believe the way in which we can support families is to pay that fee.

“What we want to do is to make sure that families don’t have to cancel a service, that they can still go ahead.”

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Mr Rowley said he had received several inquiries about whether funeral services would be going ahead with one family, who had been due to travel from Australia, forced to change their plans due to coronavirus.

He said that the outbreak might mean “a simple cremation” would take place followed by a memorial service at a later date.

“Until we are ordered not to have a funeral service, we will continue with business as usual,” Mr Rowley added.

The government is expected to unveil more financial plans following unprecedented peacetime measures.

Image copyright
Reuters

Image caption

Boris Johnson’s first daily update on Monday he acknowledged the economy was facing “a severe blow” because of the virus

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