PRE-PAID FUNERAL PLANS
Armours Funeral Service Caring and Trusted Since 1981.
When someone close to you dies, coping with the practical arrangements can seem overwhelming. You may be feeling lost or shocked. We are a third-generation family business, based in Ayr and Troon, and operating throughout Ayrshire and beyond. We are here to offer guidance and take away worry or doubt at any point.
There is no right or wrong time to call. When someone close to you dies, coping with the practical arrangements can seem overwhelming. You may be feeling lost or shocked. This may be the first time you have had to organise a funeral. Or you may have been preparing for this day for some time. It’s normal to have questions about the practicalities. Please don’t wait to call us. Arrangements can be made at any time and finalised later. We are here to offer guidance and take away worry or doubt at any point.
If the death occurs at home, a doctor should be contacted as soon as possible. For deaths in hospital, a hospice or nursing home, you can contact us first and we will take care of all the practical matters. Unexpected, sudden or accidental deaths are referred to the Procurator Fiscal in Scotland or the Coroner in England for further investigation. This can lead to a delay of several days before you are able to confirm definite funeral arrangements.
Taken into our care
Once a qualified medical professional has given authorisation, we can bring your loved one into our care. No matter where in the UK you need us, we’re available to help at any time, day or night, every day of the year. Our specialist team are known for their compassion and dignity. You and your loved one are in trusted hands. If you would like to, you can arrange to see your loved one again to say goodbye, taking as much time as you need.
Registering the death
Provisional funeral arrangements can be made before registration, but a death must be formally registered before the funeral can take place. For deaths in Scotland, an appointment can be made with any Registrar within eight days of death. Deaths in England can only be registered in the district where the death occurred and must be done within five days. As funeral arrangements cannot be confirmed until registration is complete, we recommend appointments are made as early as possible.
Spending time with a loved one
There’s no right or wrong when it comes to spending time with your loved one. For some people it helps with the grieving process and many of our clients tell us it has a longer term healing effect. This can be as public or as private as you wish.
Arrange the funeral
Funerals have the power to be very meaningful. Unique to your loved one. A reminder of the things they held dear and which were important to them and you. Our role is to help you arrange an appropriate funeral. It may be traditional or contemporary, religious or non-religious, formal or informal – or a blend of influences, whatever you choose we are here to support you and carry out your wishes.
Repatriation to and from the UK. When someone has died abroad, they can be repatriated and brought back to their home country to be buried or cremated.
Armours Funeral Service can offer help both in repatriating non-UK citizens and also bringing UK citizens who have died abroad, safely home. We have considerable experience in arranging repatriations to and from many different countries. Rest assured at every point you can expect us to uphold the highest standards of dedication, care and respect.
First steps for UK residents
In the event a death occurs overseas, the deceased’s travel insurance provider should appoint a local funeral director. It is the local funeral director’s role to arrange transport of your loved one and necessary documentation back to the UK.
Step 1 – Registering the death
When someone dies abroad, the death must be registered in the country where the person died. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office, British Embassy, High Commission or British Consulate can all advise on how to do this.
In the absence of valid travel insurance, you will need to instruct a local funeral director to arrange care before returning to the UK and cover the costs of repatriation.
Once the death has been registered, the local funeral director in association with the local authority in that country will arrange for the necessary documentation to proceed with repatriation. The deceased’s passport is essential to this process. Timescales vary slightly but, unfortunately, it’s not unusual to face significant delays
Step 2 – Obtaining a death certificate
Death certificates will be issued in the language of the country of death. If need be, we can arrange for these to be translated into any language.
Step 3 – Making funeral arrangements
Whether we have been instructed to repatriate to or from the UK, before funeral arrangements can be finalised, authorisation will be required from the local authorities in the destination country. Also, whilst every care is taken, repatriation services employ third parties including airlines, ferries, and trains whose timetables and schedules can be subject to last minute changes. We therefore recommend that no funeral arrangements are finalised or announced until the deceased – and the paperwork – has arrived in the destination country and all necessary permissions obtained.
Step 4 – Returning ashes to the UK
Returning to the UK with human ashes will require a death certificate and a certificate of cremation from the country where death occurred. Each country has its own rules about departing with human ashes and there may be additional requirements. On arrival to the UK, expect to complete a standard customs form. It is also worth checking with your transport provider to find out how you can safely carry the ashes securely.
Step 5 – Notifying the authorities
The ‘Tell Us Once’ service can be used if the person died in a Commonwealth country, a European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland. Using the deceased’s National Insurance number, central and local Government agencies are informed of the death and centrally update records relating to: council tax, passport, state pension, benefits, disability blue badge, and driving licences.
Step 6 – Leaving the UK with ashes
The best way to repatriate ashes is to take them personally. If that is not practical, they may need to be sent by air as cargo. Currently, courier and postal services no longer repatriate ashes.
Each country has its own rules for repatriating ashes from the UK. The best thing to do is determine the specific requirements with the consulate of the country to which they are being repatriated. We can assist with all necessary documentation and practical arrangements. You will always require at least a death certificate, a certificate of cremation and a customs disclaimer.
On arrival at the destination country, expect to complete a standard customs form. It is also worth checking with your transport provider to find out how you can safely carry the ashes securely.
Pre-paid Funeral Plans
A funeral plan is an easy way to arrange the funeral you want in advance. A plan allows you to specify your wishes and pay for the funeral director’s services included in your plan. As customers often tell us, that can bring peace of mind to you and your family. A plan from Golden Charter also includes an allowance towards third party costs. These are essential, non-funeral director services such as the cremation or burial fees, plus the minister or officiant’s fee to perform the service.
At Armours Funeral Service, we work in partnership with Golden Charter to provide you with a simple way to plan ahead. As one of the UK’s largest funeral plan providers*, Golden Charter has helped 900,000 people make funeral provisions** so we’re completely confident in offering their plans to you.
Everyone has different needs when it comes to funeral planning, so we make sure the plans we offer are as flexible as possible. When you get in touch, we’ll be happy to discuss your funeral requirements and tailor a plan to suit you. Rest assured a plan from Golden Charter is available to all UK residents regardless of age or state of health.
*Based on a Golden Charter analysis and independent research of the funeral plan market size as at January 2023.
**Correct at March 2023
Armours Funeral Service are an appointed representative of Golden Charter Limited trading as Golden Charter Funeral Plans which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN:965279).
Registered in England No. 02511598 Registered Office: One Fleet Place, London EC4M 7WS.
A funeral plan tailor made for you.
As an Ayrshire firm with over 40 years of experience, we have supported countless families as they face their most challenging times. Just as every person is unique, so is every funeral service. Families can struggle to make decisions about the finer details at what is already a difficult and emotional time. but there is comfort in knowing that their loved one’s final wishes have been carried out.
A pre-paid funeral plan gives you the peace of mind in saving your family this worry. Our plans allow you to fix the cost of your funeral at today’s prices, removing much of the financial burden of your family when the time comes.
An easy way to do something amazing for yourself and your family.
Although arranging your own funeral may feel strange, our experience shows that it is an effective way of reducing stress for your loved ones at an emotional time because you have taken the time to detail your final wishes, it only takes a phone call to us for your funeral plan to be implemented. With funeral costs rising faster than inflation, it’s a thoughtful way to plan for the future.
As a family business, we understand more than most how important these decisions are and how difficult they can be to make. Our team are highly experienced to take you through all the options to create your personal arrangement. Our plans are completely flexible so if you change your mind about any arrangements, we can alter this for you.
Your funeral plan questions answered
by Oliver Armour – Funeral Director (Dip FD)
What is a Pre-Paid plan?
It’s just what the name suggests it is; it’s your plan for your funeral, paid in advance. We discuss all the options with you and give you a detailed costing at today’s prices.
Do you have a plan to suit my needs?
As an independently owned funeral director, we’ll take the time to understand your wishes and tailor a plan to suit you. We can discuss these at our premises or in your home, at a time that is convenient for you. If you’d prefer to discuss this over the phone or via email, we can assist with this too. You can tell us about any preferences you have in mind – the type of funeral you would like to have, hymns, music or any other personal touches – and we’ll make sure your plan takes these into account.
What should I be thinking about?
No two people are the same, which is why we tailor – make your funeral plan for you. We pride ourselves on getting every funeral right for every family, and it’s important that your service represents you and reflects your life. Think about whether you’d like to be buried or cremated, weather you’d like a religious service or non- religious service, whether you’d like flowers or donations to a charity close to your heart. You may wish a favourite music to be played, or readings of scripture and you can choose your coffin, from traditional oak to an eco-friendly coffin.
Do I have to make these decisions? Isn’t the funeral best planned by my loved ones?
If you would prefer to leave the finer details of your funeral service to your family to decide that’s not a problem. We can create a plan for you that covers most likely costs leaving your family to arrange the service of their choosing without the financial burden.
What’s included in a pre-paid funeral plan?
Our funeral director’s services will be covered in your funeral plan, which means our fees will be fixed at today’s prices. These services typically include:
- Professional services and making arrangements for the funeral
- Transportation of the deceased from the place of death to our premises, chapel of rest or other suitable location
- Care of the deceased and preparations for family viewing if requested
- Advice on the certification and registration of death and related documentation
- Provision of funeral vehicles
- Advice on bereavement counselling
- Coffin or casket requested
Although a pre-paid funeral plan can cover all of the services above, there are some additional third party costs to consider. These are the costs for essential, non-funeral director services required to carry out a cremation or burial which need to be paid at the time of the funeral. These costs are outside our control. Depending on the plan type chosen, a Golden Charter funeral plan can include a contribution towards some third party costs. They may include:
- Crematorium fee
- Minister or officiant’s fee
- Cemetery fee: the opening of a new or existing grave for burial or interment of cremated remains
Other third party costs that may be associated with a funeral include:
- Purchase of grave or lair
- Hire of church or other venue
- Fees for organist or soloist
- Memorial, such as a headstone, entry in a book of remembrance, or the planting of a tree
- Catering, floral tributes and newspaper announcements
There will only be more to pay at the time of the funeral if the third party costs exceed the allowance when you buy your plan, or if the costs increase by more than the growth of your plan. Even if prices rise in the future, once your plan is paid for, you’ll have the reassurance of knowing there’ll be nothing more to pay for our services included in the plan – guaranteed.
What extras will my family be left to pay?
Third – party costs can’t be guaranteed as the prices are beyond our control – these include burial and cremation fees, church, newspaper, a celebrant fee, a piper, purvey costs and flowers. You can simplify set aside an amount for these costs.
What if I have an unusual request?
Anything can be noted in your funeral plan and we can carry out your wishes when the time comes.
What happens when I die?
When you take out a plan with us we give you a wallet sized card with our phone number and your plan number on it. Your family make one call to us and well organise the rest exactly the way you wanted it.
How much will it cost?
Because your funeral plan is tailored to your exact wishes, it will vary in price, starting from around £3500. Talk to us about your wishes and we can give you a free no obligation quotation.
Where is my money held?
Your investment is held in a protected trust fund that is regulated by the financial conduct authority. We, as funeral directors, are not permitted to hold your money in advance.
What happens if I change my mind?
If your wishes change about any of the details in your plan, talk to us and we can make the adjustments. If you change your mind about having a plan at all, you won’t lose your money, subject to a small administrative charge imposed by the administrations of the trust fund where the money is held.
What are the payment options?
With a Golden Charter funeral plan, you can pay for your plan in several ways. Spread the cost or make a one-off payment – simply choose the one that’s right for you. We will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.
The retail price of your funeral plan is representative of the equivalent cost of a funeral today plus an arrangement fee of £285 which is retained by Golden Charter to help cover the costs of setting up your plan.
Your payments are held within the Golden Charter Trust. With £1.2 billion under management,1 the Trust is operated by a Board of Trustees, completely independent of Golden Charter. Their role is to hold your payments and ensure that the funeral director services in your plan can be paid for at the time they are required – however far into the future that may be. For more information on how your payments are protected, please visit goldencharter.co.uk/faqs
1 Confirmed by Golden Charter Trust’s audited accounts at 31 March 2022.
When is the best time to start thinking about a funeral plan?
As soon as you are ready, ideally the sooner the better. Remember that prices are rising all the time, by taking out a tailored plan you are securing your future funeral at today’s prices.
Do I need a medical before taking out a plan?
No. There is no need for a medical or any other checks to be made. You can take out a funeral plan regardless of your age (above 18) or health.
How do you look after me as a customer?
As a Golden Charter plan holder, you’ll receive personalised plan documents, which include a summary of your plan, our details, your plan holder certificate and a personal membership card for you to carry in your purse or wallet. You can add a nominated representative to your plan if you wish to do so. Your nominated representative will receive a letter which will provide details of your plan and our details, as your chosen funeral director. They will have no authority to make changes to your plan.
Ready to take the next step? Get in touch today
A luxury fleet or something unique
Our funeral fleet consists of distinctive Black Mercedes Benz E Class vehicles and include limousines for family members. Each limousine is able to carry up to six people in the back, with one extra space in the front. Additional cars can be arranged for key participants. Children and babies can also be included in your transport plans but you will need to provide the necessary car seats.
We may be asked to provide transport for the minister or service officiant at some point during the funeral and it’s often the case they use the seat at the front. All our limousines have the facility to play music while you travel.
All local florists deliver to us as part of their service
Flowers can add another personal element. From traditional funeral sprays or wreaths, to contemporary displays, there are many options available. Often these are shaped by what purpose the flowers will serve after the funeral; placed on a grave, taken to a hospice or nursing home, left in a church or place of worship, or divided so family members can take a memento. We can arrange floral tributes on your behalf, whether that is choosing something for you where there is no preference or following a specific request. For personalised tributes or to see the fullest range of possibilities you may wish to talk to your local florist direct.
Planning funeral catering
Hotels, church halls, sports clubs and other venues are often used to provide mourners with refreshments after the funeral. Bringing mourners together can play an important role for family and friends in saying goodbye. Plus hearing stories and tributes to a loved one can add to fond memories and be a continued source of strength for those left behind.
If you’d like any help to plan a wake after the funeral we are happy to advise you, or take care of any additional planning, from catering to music and flowers, no matter how many guests are anticipated.
A choice of coffins and caskets for every preference
Coffins and caskets are available for every preference and budget. Whatever you would like – no matter how unusual – we can explore the options with you, guiding you to ensure the coffin or casket is just right and it complies with any limitations set by the crematorium or cemetery. Our range is environmentally friendly and with the exception of the metal caskets, they are all suitable for burial or cremation.
Known throughout our local communities for the highest standards of compassionate care
When you place your trust in Armours Funeral Service you can expect the highest standards of professionalism, and a truly distinct service. The role of our funeral director is to ease the stress and burden of decision-making, to listen carefully so that we may offer you expert guidance and provide you with a single point of contact who is always on hand to ease any worries or uncertainty with compassion and practical help.
Brian A Armour
Oliver A Armour
Funeral Director (Dip. FD)
Comparing Funerals Costs
No two funerals are the same. And no two funeral directors are the same either.
At Armours Funeral Service, our prices include many of the funeral elements that other providers add on as extras. To help you compare like-for-like, here’s our guide to pricing.
Add-ons, extras or included as standard?
Armours Funeral Service doesn’t charge extra for:
- Coming to your home to make arrangements
- Out of hours attendance
- Collecting clothing locally
- Family viewing
- Saturday morning funerals
- Additional staff
- Delivery of ashes locally
- Online obituary
Other factors to consider:
- Experience of staff
- Quality of reputation
- Standard of facilities
- Quality of fleet
- Professional accreditation
We’re here to help you when you need us the most.
Feel free to visit us in branch to meet our team, see the premises and ask any question you want.
Took special care of my dad and gave him the best funeral we could have asked for. Thanks so much to Oliver and everyone else at Armours Funeral Service
Excellent service. Respectful, very supportive and compassionate in their approach. Effectively guided the family at this sensitive time through all that needed done. Recommend Armours highly. Thanks once again.
There are no words to express my gratitude for genuine care and support you have shown to me over my recent bereavement. This has been a really difficult time for me but knowing you were there for me and my family was so comforting.
With much appreciation always.
Though restricted, the funeral was dignified and serene and that was due to your professionalism and understanding. We wanted to let you know how thankful we are, not just for your excellent service where you went above and beyond, but for your kindness, you clearly cared and that was a great comfort to us.
Our sincere gratuity
Thank you all for dealing with my Fathers recent cremation and making the process as soon as possible under current restrictions. Our family really appreciate the care, attention and sensitivity provided over the recent weeks.
On behalf of our family, again, my heartfelt thanks.
On behalf of my family we would like to thank you all for your support and care you have given us since the passing of our mum. From the very beginning you guided and cared for us and we really appreciate it. Your standard of care is exemplary.
Mums service was perfect, and you captured her so well in her Eulogy. It made our grieving much easier knowing that we were in such good hands.
Thank you all so much.