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Scattering ashes

(52 Posts)
millymouge Sat 14-Sep-19 21:03:18

My last sister died suddenly earlier this year. She had asked me and also stated in her Will that her ashes be scattered on the cliffs of the small seaside town where we were all born and brought up. We all had some very happy memories of the place.
I have been told that you cannot do this as it is classed as Council property and also not on the sea shore as it would pollute the water.
The family is planning to go down late one evening next month and hoping no one will be around so we can quietly do this, and say goodbye to her.
Has anyone been in this situation and been able to do it quietly.

love0c Thu 03-Oct-19 17:13:10

My advice is just to do it. Pick a quiet time. Do not ask permission. This leaves it open for your request to be refused. Only family members need to know. The ashes are extremely fine and can and will 'blow' around. Factor this in with the scattering. We put an aunts ashes in our local church gardens. My husband's mum and dad's ashes were both there and done with concent as they were both members of the church. The aunt was not, as she was not from this area. We just thought it would be nice to be together. We didn't ask the church as we knew they would refuse. We chose a quiet evening as it was getting dark. We knew it was going to rain as well. We walked passed a day later look. No sign of any ashes!

MissAdventure Thu 03-Oct-19 17:27:25

I'm on a roll today!

MissAdventure Thu 03-Oct-19 17:28:16

Oops! Not you, love

Resurgam123 Thu 03-Oct-19 18:09:33

My parents were cremated and they really wanted that.
My sister and I scattered their ashes.
I understood various things such as shoes are not alllowed and any surgical implants will be collected with the ashes and recyled .
We scattered Mum and Dads ashes . However the ashes were sticking to my welly boots.
I am sure Dad would have enjoyed that thought and that he was producing bonemeal.
That was my dad.

Resurgam123 Thu 03-Oct-19 19:43:43

When we were getting ready to put the sale of my parents bungalow to show, I went to what was still there house and I had left the two urns in their living room.
As someone was due to look around I realised the two urns were still in there and I had to rush around and remove them.
How not to show a possible buyer for a home. (We were very near. )

Calendargirl Sat 05-Oct-19 10:21:27

Dad was scattered at the crematorium by staff there, this was nearly 50 years ago, back then there didn’t seem many choices offered and he always said he wanted to be scattered to the four winds.
When Mum died 15 years ago, I was quite adamant I wanted somewhere specific to go to, so with her approval, we had her ashes interred in her parents grave. Just good to visit a lovely little country churchyard on anniversaries, lay some flowers and remember. Peaceful, and fitting as where she grew up and lived, and amongst family, friends and neighbours.

millymouge Sat 05-Oct-19 10:28:22

Re my early post, the family are gathering together this afternoon down at the sea side town that she requested to, as one of my grandsons said, “do the deed”. I am sure there will be a few tears and a few laughs. The end of an era sad

MissAdventure Sat 05-Oct-19 11:55:19


Babs758 Sat 05-Oct-19 12:14:23

I love this post!

Babs758 Sat 05-Oct-19 12:17:47

When we collected my FIL’s ashes from the crematorium we were originally going to scatter them around the rose gardens. Then we saw the council workmen smoking cigarettes and tapping the ashes onto the garden. My FIL was a chest consultant and a lovely man. So we decided to scatter his ashes at Poole Harbour where he spent many a Hapoy year sailing.

Rufus2 Sat 05-Oct-19 12:19:58

This is a coincidence! I came across two relevant anecdotes today.
1. "The Oldie" mag. has an article outlining the practice of impregnating ashes, not necessarily human, with colours and using the result for tattoos! shock My first question would be "where do I put it!? grin

2. Our local environmentalists advise that such ashes are toxic to plant/tree roots and thus discourage the fairly common practise of scattering. I suppose if a neighboring tree has regularly bothered you now's your chance to get even! grin

Marmight Sat 05-Oct-19 12:35:58

Millymouge I hope all goes well this afternoon. I’m trying to arrange the scattering of my Aunt’s ashes which have been on a shelf in her garage for the past 6 months. As the house is for sale she needs to go somewhere but left no requests. I propose to scatter them, on the quiet, near to the golf course where she played until her mid nineties. The other executor has no interest in this as she ‘said her farewells at the funeral’ but felt we should ask all the relatives, mostly nephews, some of whom only connected with my Aunt rarely. So much against my will, I did. A number of them surprisingly, are coming quite a long way as am I. I have told them it’ll be a swift exercise and I will be leaving immediately afterwards so no catering in the hope that they’ll change their minds!! I would much have preferred to do this with just DD and am kicking myself for demurring to my cousin. I am having sleepless nights worrying about it. Anyway the deed will be done in a couple of weeks My Aunt who didn’t care for fuss, would be smiling, wryly, at my predicament

millymouge Sat 05-Oct-19 12:36:57

Rufus2. grin

notanan2 Sat 05-Oct-19 13:54:06

The type of ash you get back from the cremetorium is nothing like domestic fire ash. It is very toxic to eco systems.

At coastal beauty spots you are unlikely to be the only one doing it so it does add up!

Sorry if thats not what you wanted to hear!

Alternatively the village may have a garden of rest where you can bury the ashes.

Essentially, nobody will stop you in practice, but I still wouldnt do it.

Marmight Sat 05-Oct-19 13:58:16

Some of my husbands ashes are under a potted rose bush. It is flourishing!

Quesera Mon 07-Oct-19 07:57:45

Love both anecdotes Rufus2, will remember for when we decide what to do with my husband’s ashes!

Anja Mon 07-Oct-19 08:02:52

UK Laws on scattering ashes

Less draconian than you might think. Worth clicking blue link.

nanou Mon 07-Oct-19 08:16:20

One of my friends scattered her mum's ashes in her garden and planted a rose tree on top. Three years on, this rose tree is magnificent. Food for thoughts for not polluting the waters or the atmosphere or a family having a picnic shysal smile

Rufus2 Mon 07-Oct-19 10:41:22

Three years on, this rose tree is magnificent
That's good news nanou; so much for environmentalists! grin I love roses!

Some people I've known only deserve to have their ashes scattered under a crab-apple tree, but being a sentimental old codger I'd feel sorry for the tree! sad

Daddima Mon 07-Oct-19 11:06:22

Interesting, Rufus2. We met a lady who showed us her feather tattoo which contained some of her husband’s ashes. Also, we sneaked some of my brother’s ashes into the ground around our parents’ gravestone. We planted two azaleas , and one has flourished, but the one where the ashes are withered and died!

Resurgam123 Thu 10-Oct-19 10:14:15

Anja's post is very useful.
There are a number of very helpful posts that come up on here.
Could GNHQ find a way to keep them easily available.

grannysyb Thu 10-Oct-19 10:34:20

A friend left money for her ashes to go up as fireworks! A lovely frosty evening, she went up to Handels fireworks music.

Chestnut Thu 10-Oct-19 10:47:15

Lord Newborough had his ashes fired from a cannon on his estate in North Wales. Quite a character!

Rufus2 Thu 10-Oct-19 14:39:28

will remember for when we decide what to do with my husband’s ashes!
Quesera; We still have my darling Vera's ashes from 4 years ago and we still have no disposal ideas. She succumbed too quickly to cancer such that it never became a bedside topic of conversation.
I've asked the family to combine them with mine, at the appropriate time, of course! After 62 years of wedded bliss they can say afterwards that we really stayed to the end together. What happens then will be out of our control. smile

TheReadingRoom Thu 10-Oct-19 17:00:25

When my FiL died, my Mum-inLaw divided his ashes into 5 containers - one for herself and one for each of th3 4 children.
As we were going to France on holiday shortly afterwards, part of my FiL is now in the Moet & Chandon champagne vineyard! A SiL scattered her share on the Wrekin during a family walk - not sure what the rest did.

But the best story is of my cousin's MiL who loved racing. Her ashes were put in a carrier bag and the family went for a stroll on Epsom Downs. When the time was right, a corner was snipped off the bag and as my cousin said 'We took Gran for a walk'.