Some people misunderstand the spirit of The Good Funeral Awards. Here’s a song that expresses what we’re all about – and we’ll be singing this song at the festival – so start learning the lines now.
It’s where you find the stories of derring-do in the Second World War, mixed up with tales of sixties decadence and accounts of the unusual habits of Anglican bishops.
David Twiston Davies worked for the Daily Telegraph for over 30 years, where he was a diarist, letters’ editor and Chief Obituary writer. He has edited a selection of obituary anthologies collecting the very best, including The Book of Military Obituaries, The Book of Imperial and Commonwealth Obituaries and The Book of Naval Obituaries.
As part of the Bournemouth Joy of Death Festival, Mr Twiston Davies will be speaking on ‘How to Die’ at a lunch at Days Hotel, 3 Russell-Cotes Road, Bournemouth(formerly the Marsham Court Hotel) on Sunday 9 September 12.30 for 1pm.
Tickets are £15 and include a light lunch with teas and coffees. You can get a your ticket by sending a cheque for £15 made payable to the UK Speechwriters’ Guild and posting it to Brian Jenner, 4 Lansdowne House, Christchurch Road, Bournemouth, BH1 3JR.
A speech by Brian Jenner at the London Funeral Exhibition, Chiltern Woodland Burial Park, Beaconsfield on Sunday 8 July 2012
It’s a great honour to be addressing the London Funeral Exhibition.
I want to talk to you today about overcoming death anxiety.
I want to take death out of the closet, where it is dark, threatening and unknown, and bring it into the open.
The reason I want to do this is because we can’t really live well until we come to terms with how it must end.
Bournemouth will host the first ever trade awards ceremony for the funeral industry on Friday 7 September.
The competition is an initiative run by the Good Funeral Guide and the Bournemouth Joy of Death Festival.
The Good Funeral Guide is an independent, not-for-profit consumer advice and advocacy service for people who need to arrange a funeral for someone or who want to make future arrangements for their own funeral.
The awards will be made on the basis of nominations from the public.
The judges will make the awards on the basis of quality of service to the bereaved.
I have just finished Irvin Yalom’s book Staring at the Sun. He describes strategies for overcoming the fear of death. In particular I liked the concept of ‘rippling’. We can take comfort in how our lives can shape the lives of others and the world. We can leave a legacy of influence. This is how Irvin Yalom describes it:
‘Rippling, like so many of the ideas I find useful, assumes far more power in the context of an intimate relationship where one can know at first hand how one’s life has benefited someone else. Friends may thank someone for what he or she has done or meant. But mere thanks is not the point. The truly effective message is, “I have taken some part of you into me. It has changed and enriched me, and I shall pass it on to others.”