Burial at Sea

You need a marine licence to bury someone at sea, and there are designated areas where this is permitted. However, new areas can be authorised by the Marine Management Organisation. There is a fee for this Licence. There are also rules for the coffin construction, ensuring that the materials will not damage the environment and that the coffin sinks to the bottom of the sea. You do not need a licence to scatter someone’s ashes at sea, however the Environment Agency has produced a guidance leaflet about scattering ashes in rivers.

You should avoid casting wreaths or other memorabilia – they may harm the environment, including wildlife. 

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