Skip to content
Golden Charter > News & Advice > LGBTQ+ funerals in the UK

LGBTQ+ funerals in the UK

21 Jun 2023 | 2 min read time

This month we recognise Pride Month, to celebrate LGBTQ+ people, culture and the supporting of their rights. Pride Month takes place in June to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which took place in New York City in June 1969. Throughout the month, there are often public parades, performances, events and memorials.

In honour of Pride Month, we’re taking a look at LGBTQ+ funerals and the importance of making your wishes known.

Real-life experiences

Funerals provide an opportunity for family and friends to come together to pay their respects to loved ones. They should create a space where the real-life experiences and achievements of the person who has passed can be celebrated. For many in the LGBTQ+ community, traditional funeral services haven’t always reflected their identities or relationships.

Increasing diversity and acceptance lets us recognise people’s wishes in all aspects of life, allowing people to freely be who they are. Communication between families and funeral directors can help make sure a funeral is truly reflective of the person whose life is being celebrated. Even something as simple as sharing wishes with loved ones can help make a funeral more personal when the time comes.

Advice and support

There are organisations and resources available to advise and support the LGBTQ+ community and their loved ones during the funeral planning process.

Ash Hayhurst, a funeral professional working in London, has written The Queer Funeral Guide for people in the LGBTQ+ community. The guide provides helpful hints and tips to make sure LGBTQ+ people can be sure their funeral wishes will be respected.

Final wishes

Mike Wolfe is an openly gay, retired funeral celebrant. Writing on the Marie Curie blog, he said that one of the reasons he started officiating at funerals was because sometimes in death, sexuality is covered up.

He tells the story of a gay man, whose sister organised his funeral. At the service, the man’s partner wasn't acknowledged having to sit in the second row away from the family. Mike wrote,

"For some people who have led quite gay lives, when death happens, people around them revert to very traditional thinking, and they're not sure whether they're allowed to have quite a gay funeral."

Sharing and remembering

Just like every other funeral, an LGBTQ+ funeral celebrates the life and achievements of an individual. It focuses on the positive contributions made by an individual and provides a platform for their life stories to be shared and remembered. By fully embracing LGBTQ+ identities and relationships, these services can also help to promote understanding and create a more inclusive society.

LGBTQ+ funerals in the UK are becoming more accessible and inclusive, recognising the individuals and relationships within the community. To make sure that your final wishes are considered fully, consider a funeral plan that will let you select your funeral director and specify just how your final send off should be.

At Golden Charter we work with over 2,900 independent funeral directors across the UK1 each one ready to extend a comforting arm whenever it’s needed. Many of them are family run businesses who hold a trusted place in their local communities.

That means you can be certain that your family will receive a truly personal service when it matters most.

1 - Based on number of funeral director branches in the UK accepting Golden Charter plans as at March 2023.

Golden Charter

Smart Planning for Later Life

We are one of the largest funeral plan providers in the UK* and we work with over 2,900 independent funeral directors across the UK*. Many are long-standing, family-run businesses and all provide a compassionate and professional service.

Find out more about how you can plan for the future with one of the funeral directors in our network.