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Death announcements in the paper - who was BU?

(294 Posts)
GraceMarks Thu 28-Feb-19 14:58:28

Sorry for a slightly morbid topic, but I recently had an experience where the mother of a friend of mine died unexpectedly and she and her sisters had to suddenly sort out all the various arrangements for the funeral and notifying banks, utility providers, etc etc. It was a very stressful time with an awful lot to think about.

A couple of weeks later, I was talking to my own mum and she happened to mention that she had been "looking out for the death announcement" in the local paper, but hadn't seen one and wondered if my friend knew that this was something that people are supposed to do. I asked my mum why she actually needed to see a death announcement at all, given that she already knew that my friend's mother had died, and surely anyone who is particularly interested or who knows the person who has died would have found out through friends, family etc. She got a bit huffy then and muttered something about tradition and etiquette. She seemed to be implying that my friend had made a kind of faux-pas by not announcing her mum's death, on top of all the other things she had to sort out.

Is this really something people still do, or is my mum being hopelessly old-fashioned? Just wondering what the norm is where other people come from!

NCforthis2019 Thu 28-Feb-19 15:00:27

Its what my family does - not sure about others though.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Thu 28-Feb-19 15:01:12

Unless she is landed gentry and would expect a mention in The Times obits, then I think she might be disappointed. Our local paper is now on line.

Local police advice is to not put in funeral announcments as it advertises your house as empty - and yes I do know people who have been burgled.

All funeral announcements I see, are I'm afraid, on FB, on community pages. As are deaths.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Thu 28-Feb-19 15:01:41

There's still usually a full page of births, deaths and marriages, so I presume there are still a lot of people who do this - but not everyone will, and it's surely the choice of the people left behind.

OrigamiZoo Thu 28-Feb-19 15:01:46

We never did it, though we did put one in the parish newsletter.

IsAStormApporaching Thu 28-Feb-19 15:02:39

Sadly we lost my my gran and uncle in a matter of months.
For my gran we never put a notice in the papers as she was older and a lot of her friends had passed on.
My uncle was younger and still worked. We where worried we missed some of his colleagues or friends so we put a notice in the paper.
I think whatever suits the family is all that matters.
Maybe your dm does think it's traditional to do so though.

sweeneytoddsrazor Thu 28-Feb-19 15:02:52

I think it was far more common in years gone by. Hardly anybody I know even buys a newspaper nowadays. I think its just an old fashioned thing that has largely been replaced by social media, email etc

purpleboy Thu 28-Feb-19 15:03:35

It's a good way to let people know the person has passed. The relatives behind won't know all of the persons friends to inform them and give them chance to attend the funeral.
I know there is an awful lot to think about when someone has died but I do considers this quite an important part of the arrangements.

Pizzaformytea Thu 28-Feb-19 15:03:41

When my Mum died, the funeral director asked whether we wanted an announcement and they sorted it for us. We opted for one because there were people who knew her, but we didn't know how to contact them, so used it as an opportunity to say where/when the funeral was. But it was entirely optional - if we hadn't felt that need to let her wider circle of acquaintances know then we wouldn't have done it.

MrsJayy Thu 28-Feb-19 15:03:47

I think people like your mum expect death announcements in the paper still I know my parents read the local for notices of deaths especially if it is somebody they know but maybw don't know when the funeral is, Incidently ive noticed fb post linking to funeral directors with announcements i was a bit horrified but I guess it gets word out.

GreyhoundzRool Thu 28-Feb-19 15:05:04

I did for my mum who died recently. The funeral directors said everyone announces it on social media these days, but my mum’s friends were elderly like her and wouldn’t do social media

MrsJayy Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:02

Our newsagent and post office put cards up in their windows they have always done it.

LivLemler Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:10

Still absolutely the norm in Ireland, as a way to broadcast the arrangements rather than the family having to contact everyone. There's a brilliant website that collates them. Customs around funerals are very different in Ireland and the UK though.

CluedoAddict Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:29

It's the norm here. Usually arranged by the funeral director. There are always people who might want to attend the funeral such as old neighbours, old work colleagues etc. Without it being in the paper they wouldn't know.

lyralalala Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:36

It's still very common here to put an announcement in the local paper.

lessthanBeau Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:39

We've unfortunately had to do 3 funerals in the last few years each time the funeral directors put the piece in the paper regarding arrangements. Then its personal preference if you put your own in. It used to be the done thing to put a condolence in the paper but it seems to be less popular now.

FairyMoppings Thu 28-Feb-19 15:06:52

Old fashioned imo. I didn't realise people still did this now that social media, texts, emails, mobile phones etc are around. I thought these announcements were for simpler times, to reach a wider range of people all at once. But a bit unnecessary these days, isn't it?

GraceMarks Thu 28-Feb-19 15:07:22

Hmm, interesting... I can completely see why it would be a good idea if the person had a wide social circle and lots of "acquaintances" or ex-colleagues that the family didn't know how to contact. But I don't think that many people get a local paper any more and it's all online, so for somebody to see the announcement at all, I think they would have to go looking for it - which sort of defeats the purpose!

My mum is very traditional in some ways about the proper way of doing things. I think she has a fear of being seen as the sort of person who doesn't know the correct etiquette.

daisyjgrey Thu 28-Feb-19 15:07:40

I think in the event of someones death, to make demands about etiquette and tradition of people is unreasonable regardless of the topic.
If they'd wanted to have a funeral with only cats attending and chicken nuggets instead of flowers, that's entirely their business.
Your mum needs to keep her opinion to herself, unless she's offering to call the paper and do it herself.

MrsJayy Thu 28-Feb-19 15:07:41

My uncles funeral arrangements were on social media I thought considering his age it was strange

Walnutwhipster Thu 28-Feb-19 15:08:12

When my brother died suddenly the funeral announcement was put into the local rag by the funeral director with our direction.

Birdsgottafly Thu 28-Feb-19 15:08:25

Most people I know still do that, it doesn't cost much if you do it on the online issue of the paper.

It let's everyone know, in one go (who don't use FB), what the funeral arrangements are.

Underpressureidiot Thu 28-Feb-19 15:08:26

My parents check every week to see if they know anyone and they’ve announced deaths in our family too. It’s morbid but I think it’s just what happened in the past when communication wasn’t as easy as it is now. My old boyfriends mum sadly passed away young and they announced it the other week.

Personally I wouldn’t but I think it’s because it would make me too sad to read it.

Hazlenutpie Thu 28-Feb-19 15:08:28

I haven't read a local paper in years. I don't know anyone else who does either. I think your mum is living in the past.

Fiveredbricks Thu 28-Feb-19 15:08:31

Most still do it here in Liverpool. Everyone checks The Echo newspaper for funeral arrangements and announcements as it can be seen as rude to contact the family directly to ask, but does tend to be older generations.

I think it depends where you are really though.

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