The second week of January is when more people will die in the UK than at any other time of the year, data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows.
Sharing the ONS research, the Independent noted that the main reasons for the spike in deaths at this time of the year are the cold weather and an increase in illness. It’s estimated that there is one death every 44 seconds during this week in January in the UK.
On average, there are 13,670 deaths during the second week of January. By comparison, the weekly average during the rest of the year is 9,756 deaths, so it’s a significant increase.
The news provider noted that when a loved one dies this early in the new year, it can put a financial strain on the family who have to find the money to cover the cost of the funeral at a time when they may be strapped for cash after Christmas.
Whatever your age, once you reach adulthood it’s important to consider the kind of funeral you’d like and to make your wishes known to your friends and family. You should also look into sorting out a Will to ensure your affairs are taken care of in accordance with your wishes.
It’s also advisable to look into funding your funeral, so that you don’t put unnecessary financial pressure on your family who are organising it.
If you’d prefer your friends and family not to go to great expense for your funeral, you could specify that you’d like to have a direct cremation.
This means that your body is cremated, but there’s no associated service or ceremony at the crematorium. Your family can take your ashes and scatter them where they wish at a time that suits them.
As well as saving them some of the expense of a funeral, it can also mean you’re able to say goodbye to them in a way that’s much more meaningful and personal, especially if they weren’t particularly religious.
In fact, an article for the Metro last year revealed that a growing number of people are opting for the likes of direct cremation for their loved ones, allowing them to take the ashes and have a private gathering somewhere more meaningful than a crematorium.
Another thing that’s changed within funerals, the news provider noted, is the dress code. A growing number of people are specifying that they don’t want people to wear the traditional black to a funeral, and are instead asking people to wear colourful outfits, or something that reflects the personality of the person who has passed away.
It’s a nice way to turn what is often considered a very solemn, sombre occasion into a celebration of that person’s life.
Technology is also creeping into funeral services, with the opportunity to live stream the event to friends or family who are unable to attend increasingly being taken up. For those who are unable to travel, either due to long distances or because of illness, this can be an important way to participate and pay their respects.