A celebration of life, or a civil funeral, is an alternative to a more traditional funeral service incorporating a little, or no, religion, or other spiritual and symbolic elements, as desired.

The emphasis is on your loved one’s personal life story; who they were, what they liked (and didn’t like!), what they did and said and how they will be remembered.

I’ll create a personalised tribute after spending time with you to learn more about the person, as you share your memories with me.

Such a ceremony might be held at the crematorium, or you might want to choose a more appropriate venue; the beach, a park, or zoo, a family home, or another place of special meaning to you and your loved one.

You can choose the music, poems, readings, hymns, carols or prayers and I can help with suggestions for these. There may also be other symbolic elements you’d like to include such as lighting candles, releasing balloons or planting something, for example.

As many people can be involved as you want. I can read things prepared by family members and friends. Alternatively, they can do this and I can just be on hand to take over if needed; understandably, it will be emotional and it’s hard to know how one might feel until the time comes.

I’m a former funeral director and a qualified counsellor as well as a volunteer bereavement support worker for Jersey’s Community Bereavement Service and a Samaritan. I have many years’ experience in dealing with grief and bereavement and will guide and support you as best I can at what can be a very difficult time.