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BRING OUT YOUR DEAD - BY CAR

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'If they have the correct certificates, people can bring the dear departed to the cemetery in the back of their est...
'If they have the correct certificates, people can bring the dear departed to the cemetery in the back of their estate cars', said Councillor Norman Read, chairman of the Hexham Burial Ground. 'We will do the rest' (The Daily Telegraph, 6 Jan, Weekend, p38).

Mr Read was explaining Hexham Town Council's pioneering scheme by which people can be buried in a biodegradable coffin, all for less than £200. People can buy their coffins in advance and possibly keep them under the bed 'as they come in flatpacks', said Mr Read.

The £200 will buy 'a woodland plot, a tree, a simple headstone, and a biodegradable coffin of corrugated cardboard'. The council has just ordered 30 of the coffins.

And in Wales a themed funeral train experience for steam railway enthusiasts, offered by Llangollen Railways, Clwyd, and Peace Burials, of Mawdesley, Lancashire, has been embraced by Carrog Community Council. The once-in-a-lifetime journey gives the chance to have the body carried, with up to 200 mourners, in a steam train from Llangollen to the terminus at Carrog.

The council has agreed the deceased can be buried in the village cemetery 'which is within sight and sound of the railway, regardless of the enthusiast's origin or background'.
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