Saturday, 4 July 2009

Scattering the Ashes

This post is mainly for Jon's family who were unable to be with us today when we scattered the ashes of Jon's Mum, Dorothy and his Aunt, Barbara. The post is extremely photo heavy but I hope it will let everyone get an idea of what a beautiful place Barham Crematorium is and where the ashes have been scattered. We left home around 9.30am for the hour and a half journey to Barham. We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day - brilliant sunshine and very few clouds in the sky. We arrived at the Crematorium slightly early but were soon joined by the other family members.

Part of the grounds at the Crematorium.
Jon, Jerry, Mike, Morris, Debbie and Emily outside the crematorium building.
Looking out to the gardens from the patio.
Deb and Dave admiring the flowers in the garden while we wait for everything to be sorted out.
Leading the way to the rose garden where the plaque for Dorothy and Barbara was placed under a rose bush.
Moving on to the area where the ashes were to be scattered.
The scattering of the ashes took place under these beautiful trees in the cool of the shade.
Jon scattering his Mum's ashes
Forming the shape of a cross
Morris then scattered Aunt Bar's ashes in the same place as Dorothy's.
This was then followed with a brief reading and prayer by Father Shackelton. The poem he read out was beautiful and I'd like to share it with you here.
Death is Nothing at all
Death is nothing at all, I have only slipped away into the next room.
I am I, and you are you; whatever we were to each other, that, we still are.
Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way which you always used, put no difference in your tone, wear no forced air of sorrow.
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we shared together.
Let my name ever be the household word that it always was.
Let it be spoken without effect, without the trace of shadow on it.
Life means all that it ever meant.
It is the same as it ever was.
There is unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere near, just around the corner.
All is well.
(Thank you Morris for typing out the words for each of us to have)
An orthodox prayer
The cross of the ashes
Chatting after the service
and a quick photo before we move on.
From the Crematorium we went to the Ramada Hotel in Whitfield for a buffet lunch, which had been organised by Morris, Barbara's husband. Father Shackelton joined us and we spent a very pleasant couple of hours chatting together.
Jerry, Father Shackelton and Jon.
Dave and Mike waiting to get drinks for everyone, from the bar.
Deb, Dave and Morris
Frances and Jon
After texting family who were unable to make it for the service, to advise them of the time of the toast, Jon made a short speech followed by the toast for Dorothy and Barbara (drunk with Russian vodka!).
I love the following sequence of photos, by this stage I had moved slightly back from the group and was able to take photos without Emily being aware. Jerry had been making us laugh through lunch and I think at times Emily wasn't 100% sure how to take him or whether he was being serious or not. It was fun to watch her interacting with family.
Thank you for taking the time to scroll through all the photos, I hope they have helped give you an idea of Dorothy and Barbara's resting place.
Love to all


  1. Thanks Rhona - great blog. I failed to attribute the poem which I chose. It was by Canon Henry Scott-Holland - a former Canon at St Pauls Cathedral.

  2. What a beautiful and tranquil resting place. Thank you Rhona for making this record of a peaceful ceremony for two loved ladies. xxx

  3. Hi Rhona, Morris sent me the link for this. I have so enjoyed the pictures and the description of the day.
    A fitting tribute to two lovely ladies and such a lovely place to scatter the ashes.

    Kind Regards
    Judith Rutter (nee Serebriakoff)

  4. Hi Rhona thanks for the photo's. Have sent them off to Sharon & Jen. Had wonderful weekend. Think Deb & Dave pleased to drop me off at the coach station. People on the coach kept asking me if I was getting off soon!!! My chicken wings were fantastic. I was so hungry I ate them all myslef so never got to sell any. Sorry Emily for getting your name wrong, I promise I won't get it wrong again. Lots of Love to all Jerry xx

  5. What a beautiful setting. Thank you for the photos and text - there is such a lovely feeling of peace about it all. Love Norma