British Undertakers Criticized for High Costs, Poor Service

From Reuters

Britain’s undertakers are raising the cost of death faster than the cost of living, a government report said Tuesday.

The Office of Fair Trading, a government watchdog body, said that the price of an average British funeral has risen by 28% more than the rate of inflation since 1975.

In a report published in response to complaints from the public and members of parliament, the agency said there were disturbing lapses in the service offered by undertakers.

The report cited one case of parents who were handed the ashes of their son in a plastic container wrapped in a crumpled brown paper bag and were asked for immediate payment.


In another case, the report said some staff members undressed bodies before next of kin had left the room.

Others were accused of laughing in the background, dressing inappropriately and using high-pressure sales techniques.