A webcasting service at St Helens Crematorium is to be made a permanent arrangement after a successful trial.
With funeral attendance numbers restricted under government guidelines to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, webcasting was brought in to allow family and friends – unable to attend in person – to pay their respects.
Since webcasting was introduced on Monday 11 May, more than 1,300 people have used this facility which has provided much comfort to families, with views recorded as far as Canada and Australia.
Labour Councillor Andy Bowden, Cabinet Member for Environmental Services, said: “There are many families across the borough suffering loss in such difficult times and circumstances, and who are unable to grieve and mourn in the way they’d want to.
“We’re glad to now offer this webcasting service for cremations on a full-time basis, ensuring that family and friends who aren’t able to attend in person, can pay their respects in a dignified way.”
How it works:
1. Request – the funeral director requests the service is webcast.
2. Consent – the next of kin (applicant for the cremation) signs a consent form and returns this to St Helens Crematorium no later than two days in advance of the funeral taking place.
3. Invite – from the funeral director or family member or friend organising the service to join the streaming time slot. They will receive an email link invitation that can be forwarded to others with joining instructions.
4. View – when the service begins, the camera begins streaming. The camera is positioned to the side of the chapel to view the catafalque and lectern. People attending the funeral cannot be seen unless they visit the catafalque and lectern.
If you have suffered loss and need support, there’s a wealth of information online at www.sthelens.gov.uk/births-deaths-and-marriages