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Discussion in 'Personal' started by rustybug, Jun 21, 2015.

  1. My mother-in-law passed away in November and after a long period of deliberation we (well, mostly my sister-in-law) have decided what to do with her ashes.

    We have a very special place on common land where we all shared some fantastic days out and picnics etc, so we have decided to have a picnic and scatter them there. And we will send some back to Dublin where she was born and where her parents are buried, so her siblings can have them interred or scattered at her parents' graves.

    So my sister-in-law has just asked us to organise collecting them from the funeral people. She said we did not choose for them to be in an urn, so they will be in the most basic packaging, I'm assuming some kind of cardboard box. My mum says it's about the size of a biscuit tin, or so she remembers from her mother's cremation.

    So we're thinking when we do the scattering we will have some kind of receptacle handy at the picnic so that we can pour some into it for transportation to Ireland (imagining we will spill some so if we do it there then everything will be either in the receptacle or on the land we want it to be). I'm wondering what sort of receptacle? Online places that sell urns and boxes for the purpose have either huge ones, designed for all the ashes, or tiny ones 3 inches high for if you want to keep a small amount as a keepsake. I want something inbetween - big enough that her siblings in Dublin feel they've had a decent quantity to scatter, but small enough to travel with easily. Some way of sealing so the lid doesn't fall off and lose them. Opaque. And something with a bit of gravitas, not a kilner jar with COFFEE written on it, or something. Maybe pretty enough that if her sister scatters them she might keep the jar as a memento.

    Has anyone done this before, have you any ideas for me?

    Thanks for reading.
  2. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    I'm assuming you will be travelling with the ashes.No experience or inspiration for packaging, but spoken to Mr PC who is from an air freight background. There are regulations around travelling by air so he recommends making sure you have a copy of the death certificate in case you are checked or queried. Not sure if the same applies by ferry.

    Failing a secure attractive container how about a secure one inside a slightly larger pretty one?

    Hope it all goes well.
  3. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

  4. gooddays

    gooddays Senior commenter

    For his aunt,, my husband chose something at a local pottery shop which he then gave to the funeral people. It had to be able to seal properly.
  5. tidal

    tidal New commenter

    Ireland is not a bad destination as far as transporting cremation ashes is concerned but you will need to follow certain rules which may be further complicated if you are dividing the ashes before transportation.

    I would strongly advise you to contact their embassy before attempting this to clarify what is and isn't possible, what paperwork is required and what sort of container is needed.

    They are usually very helpful and it is better to do so than face problems later
  6. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I like cat's idea. Have the basic undertaker's urn and secrete it inside something more 'fitting'?
  7. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    A cautionary tale re ash scattering. I work at a tucked away Council-run visitor site in the middle of the countryside, and one day a gentleman turned up inquiring about whether a relative's ashes could be scattered there because it had been a favourite place of the deceased. Those of us who worked there were were fine with the idea, and were quite happy to accommodate a quiet private gathering before public opening hours. Then some idiot at the Council decided to follow correct procedure and contact the owner of the patch of land that we use by agreement for parking, picnics etc. No chance - whole thing cancelled. If they'd simply gone ahead on a nod from us nobody would have known any better, but once the official paperwork started being generated that was it. I was frankly appalled at that decision.

    So what I'm saying is if you're planning on scattering the ashes in a public place, common land or otherwise, don't approach officialdom about it - just go ahead do it.
  8. Thanks for all your comments, some lovely boxes there on Etsy, too!

    MSB we will definitely not involve any officialdom! And I was careful not to mention the name of the place above... It's ridiculous, it's ASH, what harm can it do? We put our BBQ ashes on our flower beds all the time to the benefit of the plants! Kew Gardens (NOT the place we're doing it) say you have to pay £200 or something and book - only one scattering can be done per day. I understand if the whole place is starting to get knee deep in ash, but where we're going it's an ENORMOUS piece of land and very windy so I have every confidence there will be no ecological impact! Not to mention the fact that plenty of people have those disposable BBQs straight on the grass with no problems or concerns raised by the council. When we were thinking about Kew I was all for just going for a picnic and sprinkling them around the rhododendron dell!

    I feel the same way about taking them to Ireland to be honest. What's the worst that can happen with having a small jar of ash in your suitcase?
  9. tidal

    tidal New commenter

    Having the ashes taken away from you.......
    Or not being allowed to travel with them......
    It would be rare but such things have been known before

    You did ask for a worst case scenario [​IMG]
  10. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    That was Mr PC's thought when he mentioned needing the death certificate. Especially if travelling by air so everything gets xrayed.

    Hope it all goes well, Rusty, and without too much hassle from officialdom.
  11. RUFree

    RUFree New commenter

    My brother lost the certificate so when he needed to come to me with the ashes he wasn't allowed on the plane. Solution ... He posted them! Bizarrely this is fine. We did check with the post office. Mum arrived intact, but the strangest thing was she had always said she wouldn't fly... When we opened the crew packaging to scatter her ashes, we found the certificate! She had it all along...

    Weird or what?


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