A first decision is whether the person who has died is to be buried or cremated. They may have expressed a preference. For some the association of cremation is with the purifying and transformational properties of fire; for others it is seen to be less ecological. Having the ashes afterwards can also feel important, with a chance for another, personal ceremony when scattering or interring the ashes. For others, burial feels comforting and the completion of a natural cycle, being enfolded back into the earth, into Mother Nature.
The choice is often emotional – one feels better than the other. For others there may be a family tradition. Many churchyards are now full, but there are lovely alternatives to these and, in Devon, there are burial choices no more expensive than cremation.