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Public Funerals

Where no suitable funeral arrangements have been made or are being made for a deceased person who has died in the area, we may have a duty to help out (under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984). Where possible expenses will be recovered from the estate of the deceased.

If the death occurred in hospital

In this instance it will normally be the NHS who will arrange for the funeral of any person who died in or whilst travelling to hospital.

Who Pays for the Funeral?

If possible the cost of the funeral is met out of the estate of the deceased, or from a spouse or a parent. If details of family and friends are found they will be informed of the death and invited to make the funeral arrangements. If it is not possible to contact a spouse or a parent the cost will be met by us.

Property and Personal Effects

If the deceased left furniture or other personal effects arrangements will be made for the disposal of these items and any money recovered offset against the cost of the funeral.

When all costs are known and the value of the estate exceeds this, the Treasury Solicitor is informed.

How can I obtain the date and place of birth of the deceased?

This information can be found on the death certificate of the deceased. Certificates can be obtained from the Register Office at Devon County Council.

Why have you not disclosed the value of the deceased's estate?

This information will not be published by us, nor is it published by the Treasury Solicitor. This is to reduce the risk of fraudulent claims being made against the estate. Those individuals who believe they are an entitled relative can find more information via the Bona Vacantia website.

List of State Assisted Funerals

A list of State Assisted Funerals is available below. 

NameDate of DeathPlace of DeathNext of kin located
Beatrice Pengelly29 May 2015EX20Yes
Brian David Witheridge   
Michael Loughran30 Dec 2015PL19 Yes
Barbara Miles26 Dec 2015PL9Yes
James Brooking9 May 2016PL20Yes
Robert Pate18 Jul 2016PL19Yes
Brailsford24 Aug 2016EX20No
David Ring7 Oct 2016EX2Yes
John Pritchard16 Mar 2017EX20Yes
Reginald Austin26 May 2017EX20No


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