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Who Carries the Casket at a Funeral?

At a funeral, the coffin or casket can be carried either by designated pallbearers as arranged by the funeral directors, or by any of your chosen family members or friends. Find out what to expect if you have been asked to be a pallbearer with our guide below.

When the coffin needs to be carried

Pallbearers are required to carry the coffin from the hearse into the church, crematorium, or funeral service venue. Then, if the body is to be buried, they will also be asked to carry the coffin either back to the hearse or directly to the burial site depending on the distance.

Do pallbearers have to carry the coffin?

Sometimes people are asked to be a pallbearer as a reflection of their relationship with the deceased, and it might not always be necessary to help carry the coffin. Usually the coffin will be carried by four or six pallbearers, and any additional individuals will be invited to escort the coffin alongside it.

What does it mean to be a pallbearer?

Traditionally, a ‘pall’ is the piece of cloth to be draped over the coffin, and a pallbearer was someone who held the cloth before laying it down. Today, however, pallbearers are those who carry or escort the coffin.

The role of pallbearer has become a symbolic one, which displays the love and respect between them and the deceased.

In the event that those who arranged the funeral do not have appropriate people to ask, the funeral director can provide pallbearers.

Find out more about what happens on the day of a funeral, and about the burial or cremation process in particular.

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Who Carries the Casket at a Funeral?

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Who Carries the Casket at a Funeral?

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Who Carries the Casket at a Funeral?

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A Few Kind Words...

“We would like to thank you very much for looking after Mum and for all the arrangements you made for her funeral last Thursday. Your professionalism, help and ready advice together with your sensitivity at such a difficult time was much appreciated by us all. Our best regards.”

Nigel, Colin Ian & Coraine Ferguson

“Thank you so much for the way you took care of Loui’s funeral for us. You really went the extra mile, we are really grateful for all your help with the arrangements with Louis and Mum.”

Sheila, Kenny & Family

“The family would like to thank you and the whole team at Greenwood’s for your warm and professional service. We were delighted with your attention to detail and the relaxed but respectful manner of the Attendant and Bearers on the day itself. Many of our friends commented on the ‘dignity with lightness of touch’ and said it was one of the best-organised funerals they had attended. It was certainly a very different experience from my father’s funeral twelve years ago, and we shall recommend you wholeheartedly to others.”

Carole Day and Family

“We just wanted to say a huge thank you for everything you did for us. You certainly made a very emotional and difficult time so much easier to bear. We are so grateful for the support you gave us and your gentle guidance along the way. Everything was perfect thanks to you and we would highly recommend you to all. With very best wishes.”

Family of Stanley Stearman

“Thank you so much for the care you took of mum and help and kindness you showed us making a very sad time so much easier to bear. With very best wishes and a very big thank you.”

Claire, David & Pia Stevens

“Just a wee note to say a huge thank you for your amazing support, care and friendship when helping us to arrange my dad’s funeral. Although it was such a difficult time for us as a family, you ensured that we were so well looked after & that everything went perfectly. Our tears often turned to laughter in your company & that’s because you helped us remember the good times.

Thank you for everything from the bottom of our hearts. We would also like to thank the whole team involved in helping before, during and after my dad’s funeral. You truly are amazing, showing such dignity, compassion, care and professionalism. Thank you.”

Karen, Anna & family

“We would like to thank you for a friendly and professional service and especially Adam who made a good job of the service, and a big thanks to Jane who was a great help and showed much kindness. We would recommend your company.”

Chris & Mike Whalen

“To all that it concerns, thank you seems hardly enough for making our Pops (William Hadaway) day very special with love and dignity from the beginning to the end you all made the day very special as well as his wishes you were there for all the family and made it a bit easier for us all to handle, couldn’t have wished for anything more. Many thanks again.”

Mark Hadaway & family

“I would like to say a big thank you for everything. I had nothing to worry about, it all went so smoothly from the day of his death to the end of the funeral and in the circumstances could not have been better. Thank you so much.

I don’t have a great deal of experience in these matters, but compared to the other funeral directors I had to deal with, Greenwoods are the tops and you personally were a pleasure to deal with, you hit absolutely the right note.”

Ann Bishop

“Thank you for all your kind attention during the funeral of my husband John on the 24th May. The arrangements were so efficiently and sympathetically handled that it lifted a huge burden from my shoulders. I enclose a cheque in favour of the Alzheimer’s Society in memory of my beloved John.”

Catherine Waterman

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