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Information about cremation, and what happens to cremated remains 

Frequently asked questions

We've provided answers to some of our frequently asked questions below.

Is cremation more expensive than burial?

Generally, the cost of burial is normally higher than the fee charged for cremation.

Do I have to use a Funeral Director to arrange the cremation?

No. Cremation has strict rules about the paperwork involved, please read our arrange a cremation service without a Funeral Director page before deciding on this.

What happens to the coffin after it leaves the Chapel?

The coffin is lowered via the catafalque into the committal room where we carefully check the nameplate against our identify card to ensure this is correct. The coffin is not opened

Can relatives witness the committal of the coffin to the cremator?

Yes. This can be witnessed by prior arrangement with the Cemeteries and Crematorium Manager. You should inform the Funeral Director or person making the arrangements you wish to do so.

Is the cremation of a body governed by a code of ethics and working practices?

Mintlyn Crematorium is a member of the Federation of British Cremation Authorities [FBCA] and required to operate strictly in accordance with a Code of Cremation Practice. This Code, which provides an ethical standard of cremation practice in Great Britain, is displayed in the public areas of the building. You can read the Code of Cremation Practice document in full. You can find the document at the bottom of this page.

How soon after the service will the cremation take place?

The coffin will be placed in the cremator as soon as practicably possible, and normally shortly after the service. 

Is the coffin cremated with the body?


Why should I not put personal items in the coffin

The Environmental Protection Act 1990, and other legislation in place, ensure that the process is completed under controlled conditions which will minimise the impact on the environment. It's essential that any items placed in the coffin for presentation or viewing purposes are removed before the cremation. It will not be possible for any floral tributes to be included with the coffin.

Should items of jewellery be left on a body for cremation?

It will not be possible to recover any items of jewellery after the coffin has been cremated.

What about pacemakers or orthopaedic implants?

Some implants can be hazardous and have to be removed by the hospital or Funeral Director. Hazardous implants are those that have an explosive capacity. They present a serious health and safety issue after the coffin and body has been placed into the cremator. They include:

  • pacemakers that control abnormal heart rhythms
  • fixion intramedullary nails, commonly used to pin together bones that have been fractured
  • baclofen pumps used for delivering a liquid form of baclofen into the spinal fluid

It does not include other orthopaedic implants. 

Since the Federation of Burial and Cremation Authorities (FBCA) code of cremation practice was written in 1999, the opinion on the recycling of metals, in particular orthopaedic implants, following cremation has changed. To keep up with the need to recycle more, the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management (ICCM) have introduced a means of collecting all metals and orthopaedic implants so they can be recycled. Families make this decision. All profits from this recycling are donated to death related charities. You can find out more in our leaflet on Recycling of Metals at the bottom of this page.

Can more than one body be cremated in a cremator at the same time?

No. With the exceptions in the case of mother and baby or twin children, provided that the next of kin has made a specific request for this to happen.

What happens to the cremated remains after the cremation?

Once the cremation is completed the cremated remains are removed completely from the cremator. Metal used in the construction of the coffin or orthopaedic implants are removed for recycling. The cremated remains are then reduced to a fine consistency, put into an appropriate container suitable for storage, and await further instructions.  

What procedures are followed to ensure that cremated remains are kept separate?

A cremator can physically accept only one coffin at a time and the remains are removed before the unit can be used again. The identity card accompanies the coffin and cremated remains throughout the process until final disposal, ensuring that cremated remains are kept separate.  

What quantity of remains will there be following an adult cremation?

The cremation of an adult will normally result in cremated remains weighing between 2 and 4 kg.

What happens to the cremated remains strewn on the ground?

The cremated remains are normally scattered over a wide area of ground and then covered with a suitable soil and grass seed.

Can cremated remains be buried or scattered and their position marked with a memorial?

Mintlyn Crematorium offers a range of memorials, but does not allow headstones. 

Can cremated remains be buried without being in an urn or casket?

No. Cremated remains interred in our Gardens of Remembrance must be contained in a casket or urn that is suitable for the purpose. Cemeteries, Churchyards and other Crematoriums may have different rules. 

Can cremated remains be kept by the family pending final disposal?

Yes. If a final decision has not been made by the applicant for cremation, they may collect and retain the cremated remains if required. We charge to store cremated remains unless there is a pending memorial.

If I want to know more or arrange a visit to Mintlyn?

Please ring Mintlyn Crematorium, our contact details are below.