Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead… this is my gospel… ‘If we have died with him, we will also live with him…’. (2 Timothy 2 : 8, 11)

Funerals are offered in faith from Christ Church to All.

Whether you are looking to plan ahead or whether you are working now  in a time of immediate loss, we hope that this page will be of assistance to you and we offer it to you with the prayer of the Church.

Funerals can serve many purposes and be occasions both of farewell and celebration of life, each within the context and promise of Christian Hope. In the resurrection of Jesus Christ we commend those whom we love and who have died into the faithful and loving truth of God, in the promise of eternal life. This is the faith held for over two thousand years, and proclaimed new in each generation.

To make an enquiry or arrangements regarding a funeral, please contact the Parish Office.

Guidance for Funerals

This information has been compiled and offered by the people of Christ Church.

We seek to serve and provide for the whole community around the eastern end of the Stray, extending from the railway bridge before Grove Road School, all around Harrogate High School, Knaresborough Road, Fairfax, Hookstone, Woodlands, Boroughbridge Road, Wayside (The Saints), and through into the edge of town beside the Odeon and Asda.

As part of the Church of England we are here for all who live within this area, whether or not you have any connection with the church.  

You do not need to be a member.

You do not need to attend church here.

We seek to be here for you when you need us.

Along with the other churches within this area and the town – particularly Woodlands Methodist Church, St Aelred’s Roman Catholic Church, the Society of Friends, the Mowbray Community Church, the town centre churches and those of Starbeck, we are part of the Christian faith community here for you.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or enquiries. It is always possible to ask, we will always do all we can to help.

We are here to provide for you. This church is your place and space when you need it, or wish it.   The Church is an active faithful community, seeking to provide welcome, faith, and care.

Your local Vicar will always be happy to lead a funeral for you. You do not need to be a member of the Church or to have attended in the past. These services can take place either in church or in the crematorium.

  • In Church – A funeral service can be held in the church building for anyone who lives in the local community (parish) or anyone who has a link to the area and wishes the service to take place here.  Times are arranged with the Vicar and Church Office, and may include clergy or ministers from elsewhere. There is no time limit to the length of a service.  The service can be of a Traditional or Contemporary wording and style.  Services may include hymns, recorded music and various readings (secular and religious, see below). Every funeral is shaped for each occasion, to fit with those whom we remember, their family and friends.
  • In the Crematorium – Our local crematorium is at ‘Stonefall’ in Harrogate. Funeral services take place here for all religions or none, and can be led by your local Vicar, parish clergy, or others. Hymns, readings and music are all possible, but the service time is restricted to 20 minutes. Crematorium Fees are set by the Borough Council;  Ministers fees are set by the national Church.
  • A combination of Church and Crematorium – A service can be held in Church followed by cremation at ‘Stonefall’. The ‘Stonefall’ part may or may not be attended by family and mourners, or only by the Funeral Director before return of ashes to the family for scattering or interment (burial). It is also possible to hold a service of Cremation at ‘Stonefall’ followed by a larger service in Church (often called a Memorial service); this can be with or without the ashes. These alternatives allow for larger, longer services than are usually possible at the crematorium, whilst still enabling family or friends to attend ‘Stonefall’.

Within the funeral services there are opportunities for hymns, readings, music, and other elements.

The number and choice of readings can be shaped and agreed with the minister conducting the service, to include Bible and other readings (only one reading needs to be from the Bible).

In choosing Hymns we seek those which say what you want to say, but also which people know. They can often include hymns chosen by the loved one themselves. Hymns can help to express our love, prayer and emotion through someone else’s words, and through the tune, music and physical act of singing.

Music within the service can be provided by the organ or other musicians,  or through recorded media (CD or MP3 etc).  This can be arranged with the Vicar/Minister, or through by the Church Office and Funeral Director.

A funeral has two focus points, the one who has died and, the promises of Christ. Each of these is vital, and the two are held together of equal importance. We seek to remember and commemorate our loved one within the promises of Christian Faith, Hope and Love.

One or more tributes (eulogies) may be made.  These can be by members of the family and friends or by the minister. These are opportunities to recall aspects of the life lived as well as personal remembrances and celebrations. If the tribute is made by the minister they will often be speaking more on behalf of the family than in their own knowledge, and will seek beforehand to have gathered suitable information from the family in order to speak on their behalf.

Alongside the tribute(s), the minister will give a brief sermon/address encouraging us not only in holding faith for the one who has now died, but also in holding faith ourselves, in the continuing days of our lives – to be encouraged and held in the full Gospel (good news) of Christ.

In both Church and Crematorium funerals, it is possible to receive a collection in celebration of the life of the one for whom we gather. This may be for one or more charities. If the funeral takes place in Church we ask that the life and work of the Church (a Registered Charity) may be considered as one of these charities, but the request and wishes of the deceased and/or their family will always be respected over such a collection.

A collection needs to be recorded through the Church or Funeral Director accounts, irrespective of which charities then receive it. Appropriate contact details for any nominated charities are always very helpful in fulfilling the wishes of family and loved ones.

Christ Church works with several local firms of funeral directors, although there are other firms in Harrogate as well as further afield.

In purely alphabetical order :

W. Bowers Services to the Bereaved    01423 770258

Co-op Funeral Services                          01423 889449

Alistair & Anthony McBride                 01423 528500

Neil & Sonya Milsted                             01423 885767

H. C. Townsend and Son                      01423 871110

Scatchards                                               01423 862055

Swainsons                                               01423 504751

Whiteley & Leachman                          01423 863263

It is no longer possible to hold full burials within our churchyard at Christ Church as there is no remaining space.  Burials can take place at ‘Stonefall Crematorium’, where there is also provision for “Woodland Burials”.  Your Funeral Director will be able to advise on this.

Interment (burial) of ashes can take place at Christ Church,  within an existing family grave or within the ‘Garden of Rest’. In the Garden of Rest, ashes are interred in a specific plot (as loose ashes) with the garden purposefully kept clear of memorial stones.  A loved one’s name can be entered in the ‘Book of Remembrance’ kept on public view in the church.

It is not permitted to scatter ashes within the consecrated ground of a churchyard.

Flowers at the service are of course possible and can be arranged by the family or through the Church.

The placing of flowers on graves is of course entirely welcome. Volunteers work very hard to maintain our churchyard as a beautiful, accessible and prayerful place, and the churchyard is managed and cared for by the PCC (Church Council) on behalf of the whole community. Memorial Stones and Grave Space remain the responsibility of each family.

Maintaining the churchyard is often very demanding, offers of help will most likely be gratefully received. A family tending the grave of its loved one is a very traditional action of care and memorial. Please do not be offended if you return and flowers have been removed, we try to clear away flowers which have died. Removing flowers from plastic wrappers will slow them rotting in rain.

Artificial flowers and decorations.  Please try to avoid these as they do not biodegrade but do deteriorate and can accidentally be mown, causing distress and unfortunate mess.

Grant  to  us,   Lord  God,

to  trust  you  not  for  ourselves  alone,

but  also  for  those  whom  we  love

and  who  are  hidden  from  us  by  the  shadow  of  death ;

that,  as  we  believe  your  power  to  have  raised

our  Lord  Jesus  Christ  from  the  dead,

so  may  we  trust  your  love  to  give  eternal  life  to  all

who  believe  in  him ;

through  Jesus  Christ  our  Lord,

who  is  alive  and  reigns  with  you  and  the  Holy  Spirit,

one  God,  now  and  for  ever.   AMEN.