June 27th, 2012

Undercover Undertaker

An expose of Co-operative Funeralcare? I've just had dealings with them. OK, shock me.

Right, Did you know that the Co-op keeps bodies on racks in refrigerated warehouses known as "hubs"? These hubs serve a wide area and are located on industrial estates.  If a body is required for viewing it has to be driven to the local chapel of rest in a van. 

Interesting, but I'm not surprised.

Sometimes mistakes occur. The wrong body is sent to a funeral.  Bodies are delivered late for viewing and staff lie about it. In one case that we filmed the coffin wouldn't fit in the van and had to be transported without its lid.

Yeah, life's like that. On your own evidence Co-op staff are embarrassed by these mishaps and offer generous compensation when things go really wrong. 

Funeral directors are also salesmen. They're under pressure from the high-ups to make as much money as they can.

I could wish things were otherwise, but that's capitalism for you. Now make my flesh crawl

Erm, that's it.

So undertaking puts up a front. I knew that already. Does anyone really suppose that it continues to be all flowers and Bach and Trappist hush behind the scenes? Mainly, I should think, people don't suppose anything. Out of sight, out of mind- and thank goodness for that.