Things to consider when arranging a funeral

This page covers how to arrange a funeral, the legal requirements, the documents you will need and the key decisions to make.

Many people use a professional funeral director to plan and arrange a funeral, as there is a lot to consider at a difficult time.

However, legally there is no requirement for you to use a funeral director and anybody can organise and arrange a funeral themselves. It is your decision, and our bereavement services staff are here to support you.

We can offer information and advice to help you to make the correct choice for either your own funeral arrangements or the arrangements for your loved one.

Many organisations available can also advise on how to personalise and plan a funeral. The Natural Death Centre can offer information and advice on how to arrange inexpensive, self-arranged and environmentally-friendly funerals. You can also get useful advice from Citizens Advice.

If you prefer not to use a funeral director please contact us and we can advise what you will need to do.

Using a funeral director

We advise using a funeral director who belongs to one of the professional associations, such as the National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD) or the Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors (SAIF).

They will take care of the whole process, from legal documents, to arranging to care for the body until the funeral itself.

Salford City Council works in partnership with a local funeral director to offer affordable, professional funeral services. Information can be found at Salford Residents Funeral Services.

Local funeral director contact list

Kane Funeral Services (Salford Resident Funeral Service)
331 Bolton Rd, Salford M6 7GU
0161 536 2664

Alder Forrest Funeral Home
422 Worsley Road, Winton, Eccles, Salford, M30 8HQ
0161 707 8778

Bridgewater Funeral Service
27 Chaddock Lane Boothstown, Worsley, Salford, M28 1DB
0161 637 7550

Broadoak Independent Funeral Service
354 Worsley Road, Swinton, Salford, M27 0FH
0161 794 7499

Carriages Funeral Services Ltd
4 Barton Rd, Swinton, Salford, M27 5LJ
0161 794 9199

Co-Operative Funeralcare B Johnson & Sons
169 Liverpool Road, Cadishead, Salford, M44 5XH
0161 775 2173

Co-Operative Funeralcare B Littler & Sons
278 Lower Broughton Road, Salford, M7 2LA
0161 792 4108

Co-Operative Funeralcare Bridgford & Sons
23 Chorley Road, Swinton, Salford, M27 4AF
0161 793 1228

Co-Operative Funeralcare Bury
22 Silver Street, Bury, BL9 0EX
0161 764 4177

Co-Operative Funeralcare Cheetham
294 Bolton Road, Walkden, Salford, M28 3FJ
0161 790 2924

Co-Operative Funeralcare Eccles
204 Church Street, Eccles, Salford, M30 0LZ
0161 789 3083

Co-Operative Funeralcare Farnworth
175-177 Albert Road, Farnworth, Bolton, BL4 9HP
01204 573 280

Co-Operative Funeralcare J R Barlow & Son
238 Station Road, Pendlebury, Salford, M27 6BY
0161 794 2142

Co-Operative Funeralcare Laithwaites
15 Eccles Old Road, Salford. M6 7DE
0161 736 1414

Co-Operative Funeralcare Prestwich
438 Bury New Road, Prestwich, Manchester, M25 1BD
0161 773 1071

Co-Operative Funeralcare Salford
143 Cross Lane, Salford, Manchester, M5 4AP
0161 736 1487

Christopher Terry Funeral Services
620-622 Liverpool Road, Eccles, Manchester, M30 7NA
0161 707 5888

Hopkins Bray Funeral Services
33 Station Road, Manchester, M41 9JG
0161 748 6834

Howarths Funeral Service
2-4 Balmoral Rd, Farnworth, Bolton BL4 9HR
01204 707 775

John Tollitt Independent Funeral Service
10 Higher Road, Manchester, M41 9BQ
0161 748 4448

Lilleywhite Funeral Service
301 Bury Old Road, Manchester, M25 1JA
0161 773 2749

Paul Williams Independent Funeral Directors Ltd
138-140 Bury New Road, Whitefield, Manchester, M45 6AD
0161 796 6018

Silletts Funeral Service
Kelsil, Spring Lane, Radcliffe, Manchester M26 2TQ
0161 723 2383

Timeless Funeral Services
265 - 267 Dumers Ln, Radcliffe, Bury, Manchester M26 2GN
0161 959 0108

Unsworths Funeral Services
Cooper St, Bury BL9 0LJ
0161 464 6607

Unique Funeral Service LTD
11A Memorial Rd, Walkden, Worsley, Salford, M28 3AQ
0161 703 9944

Legal requirements

The main legal requirements in England and Wales apply whether you use a funeral director or not. They are that:

Required documents

Before you can arrange a funeral, there are certain forms you’ll need to give to the funeral director, or, if arranging it yourself, to the crematorium or cemetery office. You can pick up these forms from the cemetery office at Agecroft Cemetery.


For burials, you’ll need to provide a Green Certificate for Burial (Form 9) or, if the coroner was involved, an Order for Burial (Form 10).


For a cremation, you must provide:

  • an Application for Cremation (Form 1) signed by the next of kin or executor
  • a Green Certificate for Cremation (Form 9) from the register office or an Order for Cremation (Form 6) if the coroner was involved
  • medical forms 4 and 5, completed by the doctor who dealt with the deceased

Key decisions

When planning a funeral, you’ll need to consider:

  • any instructions left by the deceased, though you do not have to follow them
  • where the body should rest before the funeral
  • the time and place of the funeral, which can only be finalised once the order for burial or cremation has been issued
  • what kind of ceremony to have
  • who will conduct and contribute to the civil or religious service
  • how much to spend on the funeral
  • whether to have flowers or donate money to a chosen charity
  • sending out invitations
  • placing a notice in the newspapers

Where to hold the funeral – your choices

A funeral can be either by burial at one of our cemeteries or by cremation

Remember to check the deceased’s will or other written instructions for special wishes about their funeral or what should happen to their body. However, the executor does not have to follow the funeral instructions left in the will.

If there are no clear wishes, it’s generally the executor or nearest relative who decides whether the body is to be cremated or buried.

There are many different types of funerals and it’s useful to remember that you can:

  • decide the form of any ceremony you choose to have
  • choose a religious, humanist or civil ceremony
  • choose a ceremony that reflects any religious beliefs or multicultural traditions
  • choose where to hold the ceremony – it can even be in your home if you wish
  • be buried on private land, such as your own garden, if there’s nothing in the deeds restricting the use of the property and the local planning office and environmental health department have been informed. For further advice on this you can contact the Bereavement Services team, details below.

You do not have to:

  • have a religious service or use a member of the clergy/priest/faith leader unless you want to
  • hold your ceremony in a crematorium or place of worship

The funeral service

If you choose to have a ceremony, it can be personalised as much as you wish. In some cases, the deceased may have planned their own funeral in advance. If you have the funeral at a crematorium and are planning a personalised ceremony, it’s a good idea to check with the crematorium manager beforehand as you may need a double time slot.


Music can be a key part of any ceremony and you can choose from traditional organ music, a CD or live music. Perhaps discuss this with relatives, your funeral director and the person you have chosen to conduct the ceremony.

Both Agecroft and Peel Green Crematoria have a Wesley Media system which allows you to download any music of your choice which is included in the cost of the booking. Visual tributes are available at both crematoria. We can also arrange for live webcasting for friends or relatives who are unable to attend the service. Please note there is an additional fee for both visual tributes and webcasting which can be found under fees and charges.

Personalising the ceremony

You may want to include a reading, a poem or a favourite story. You could also consider using personal items as part of the ceremony. Personal items will help reflect the person who has died and make the ceremony more special and a celebration of their life.

Contacting us

If you have any questions, please contact us.

You can use the online form:

Contact us online

Or phone 0161 686 7290

Or visit us in person at:

Bereavement Services office
Agecroft Cemetery
Langley Road
M27 8SS

Agecroft Cemetery office opening times:

  • Monday to Friday from 9am to 4.30pm
  • Wednesday from 9.30am to 4.30pm
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