A funeral celebrant is someone who is called upon to help families at this most painful time in their lives - usually the loss of someone they loved and held dear. As a celebrant I am motivated by wanting to help those families prepare a memorable service - one that suitably honours a life but can also celebrate that life.
I work independently - I am not affiliated to any church or religion and can officiate at non-religious services or those where families feel an element of religion is appropriate ... perhaps a prayer or a hymn The time within the service is yours and I will act upon your wishes.
Read through my testimonials and see what some of my lovely clients have said about their experience of working with a celebrant ...... with me.
Religious or not?
I am able to officiate at either non-religious funerals or at those where an element of religion or spirituality is desired. I am not a Humanist and have no affiliation to any ideology or religion. This means I am free to conduct exactly the sort of ceremony the family wants. Many mourners begin by saying that the person who died was not religious and did not go to church, and yet many still wish to include an element of religion – maybe a hymn, a blessing or a prayer. I am led by the wishes of the family and, of course, can offer a funeral where religion is not referred to at all.
When my father died in November 2009, I chose to both design his funeral service and write and deliver the eulogy. I was told by many people it was the best funeral they had ever attended.
My name is Sally Ward and I am the current National Funeral Celebrant of the Year.
I have worked as a celebrant, and take much pleasure, pride and care in making every service memorable, unique and personal.
I am based just outside Belper, and officiate at funeral services throughout Derbyshire and into Staffordshire, Nottinghamshire and Cheshire
For many years, I worked as a Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages at Chesterfield and Amber Valley and have vast experience of conducting many different types of ceremony: marriages, baby-namings, Civil Partnerships, Citizenship Ceremonies, Renewal of Vows and Commitment ceremonies.
As a Registrar, I found it very moving to spend time with the families of the deceased – hearing about the life they lived and the friendships and families that sustained them. I was always driven by the need to make a seemingly difficult task as painless and easy as possible.
For me, the move to conducting funeral services has been a natural progression of my work and the comments from Funeral Directors and mourners have been uniform in their appreciation.
I am a member of the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants and proud and somewhat humbled to have been nominated and reached the finals for Celebrant of the Year in 2016, 2017, 2018 and this year, 2019....I won the title.
My 'Interview with Tony Piper, founder of www.funeralcelebrants.org.uk
Finalist Funeral Celebrant of the Year 2016, 2017, 2018 and now, once again 2019
I am often introduced to families by their chosen Funeral Director although more often now, I receive a phone call directly from a family member ... or I have worked with the family previously. Sometimes, I receive contact directly from a person who understands their lifespan is severely limited and, bravely, they wish to talk to me about their funeral. However an introduction is made, I work closely with families and Funeral Directors to ensure everything goes exactly as planned.
I work alongside the family to create exactly the service they wish to hold, taking into account the beliefs, memories, hopes and expectations of everyone concerned. Each service honours the person who has died and brings comfort to the people left behind.
Whatever your wishes for the funeral service, please feel free to discuss them with me.
My fee is normally collected by the Funeral Director and passed onto me ... it forms a part of the overall cost the Funeral Director will give to you.
The fee includes my visit to see you, typically lasting up to two hours. I then devote my attention to writing the eulogy. This is usually emailed to you, within a few days, for any additions or corrections.