Bereavement Support

There are so many organisations that provide invaluable information and support to people affected by bereavement. Some serve a specific geographical area or people affected by a particular type of death. To avoid this page becoming just another phone directory  we have given details of just a selection below. If you call us we will look for the organisation best suited to your own individual circumstances.

Please be aware that some of these organisations are staffed by volunteers and may provide an answer-machine service at times.


The Samaritans
24 hour helpline support every day of the year for anyone in distress including those who are feeling suicidal. 
T: 08457 90 90 90

Medical Emergencies - dial 999

Medical advice in a non-emergency situation - dial 111

NHS Choices
Gives access to find NHS services including hospitals and local doctors and helpful information on a huge variety of health related topics.



Cruse Bereavement Care

Website address:

National email support service:

National helpline number: 0808 808 1677

Helpline opening hours: Monday - Friday 9.30am - 5pm (excluding bank holidays) with extended hours on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays to 8pm

Young People's website:

Provides one-to-one and other support to the bereaved organised through local branches - find your local branch number on the website. 

Information about bereavement and other issues on helpline and excellent bookshop on the website.


Miscarriage Association
T: 01924 200799
Originally founded by people who had experienced miscarriage it continues to provide support and encourage good care by professionals.

Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Society (SANDS)
T: 020 7436 5881
Welcomes calls from anyone affected by a stillbirth or a baby, family, friends or professionals including long after the event.

Child Bereavement UK
T: 01494 568900 for the Information & Support Team
A charity that has a dual focus of training professionals who work with families and children affected by a death which also produces excellent resources that can be used by those who are bereaved. This includes families and professionals supporting children affected by the death of an adult or anyone affected by the death of a child.

Child Death Helpline
T: 0800 282986
Mon-Fri 1000-1300, Weds only 1300-1600
Every day 1900-2200
Helpline support for anyone affected by the death of a child, irrespective of the age of the child, the relationship or the length of time since the death.
Provided by Great Ormond Street and Royal Liverpool Children's Hospitals.

Winston's Wish
Helpline: 08088 020021
Gives support for those caring for children affected by the death of a parent or a sibling and to the children themselves. 

TCF (formerly The Compassionate Friends)
T: 0845 123 2304 
Every day of the year 1000-1600 and 1830-2230
Support by telephone, befriending and local groups for anyone affected by the death of a child.
Please note that this charity supports people irrespective of the age of the child at the time of death i.e. the child may have reached adulthood.

Childhood Bereavement Network
T: 020 7843 6309
Although this organisation is mainly a professional network their website has a good search facility on its front page to allow you to find support services for children in your local area.


Carers Trust
The new organisation for carers formed by the merging of Crossroad Care and the Princess Royal Trust for Carers. (The Princess Royal Trust for Carers is still the title in Scotland).
W: click here for the page to find support in your area
T: If you cannot find what you want on the website call this number: 0800 800 4361


London Friend
LGBT Bereavement Helpline
T: 0207 7837 3337 Tues 1930-2130
Support for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people expecting or experiencing bereavement and also for their families and friends.

Macmillan Cancer Support
T: 0808 808 0000
Mon- Fri 0900-2100
Information and support for anyone affected by cancer whether they have been diagnosed themselves or are a family member, carer or friend.

Way Foundation (Widowed And Young)
T: 0300 012 4929
Provides a self help network across the UK to those who are bereaved through losing their partner/spouse when aged 50 or under, together with their children.

Way Up
The organisation that has grown out of WAY (above) for people in their 50's and 60's

Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide
T: 0844 561 6855 Lines are open 0900-2100 every day
A self help organisation which exists to meet the needs of those bereaved by the suicide of a family member or anyone close to them.

British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy
Professional association and accrediting body for counsellors.
W: includes a 'Find a Counsellor' section
T: 01455 883300, Mon - Fri 0845-1700


The Blue Cross
T: 0800 096 6606 Everyday 0830-2030
Telephone and email support following the loss of a companion animal.


Citizens Advice
Advice is not available from a national number. This site gives information and links to local Citizens Advice Bureaux.

GOV.UK - public services all in one place
Official portal to UK national and local government services.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office
T: 020 7008 1500
W: follow links to Travelling & Living Abroad - contact us
Government number for advice for deaths overseas or contacting relatives known to be overseas about a death in the UK. See website for numbers for contact details for individual embassies.

Money Advice Service
T: 0300 500 5000
Clear unbiased information to help you manage your money better.

Specialist cleaning services
Please call us for details of companies nearest to your area.

FirstStop Advice
FirstStop Advice is an independent, free service providing advice and information for older people, their families and carers about care and housing options in later life. FirstStop also offers useful information for carers looking for support and advice.

Both of these organisations below  can help prevent unwanted mail to the deceased:

The Bereavement Register
T: 0800 082 2233

Deceased Preference Service
T: 0800 068 44 33


Institute of Civil Funerals
T: 01480 861411
Trains, regulates and can provide details of civil funeral celebrants.

National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD)
T: 0845 230 1343
Largest professional association of funeral directors with Code of Practice and Arbitration Scheme.

British Humanist Association
T: 020 7324 3060
W: click here for the relevant page on the website
Provides information on and officiants for non-religious funerals.

Natural Death Centre
T: 01962 712690
Information on 'green' funerals and arranging a funeral yourself.

Funeral Map
T: 0845 004 8608

Please be aware that inclusion of an organisation in this list does not constitute an endorsement of their services


Contact the Bereavement Advice Centre


0800 634 9494

Monday to Friday, 9am - 5pm.


Bereavement Advice

There are many practical issues to manage when someone dies.

Bereavement Advice Centre supports and advises people on what they need to do after a death


  • What to do when someone dies

    Important checklists and people to contact.

    read more
  • Death certificates and Coroner's inquests

    Definitions, medical documents, procedures, and the Coroner's powers.

    read more
  • Registering a death and informing others

    The registration process, dealing with assets, and people to inform.

    read more
  • The funeral

    Planning, the ceremony, documents, and what to do after the ceremony.

    read more
  • Probate and legal procedures

    A guide to probate and the regional variations.

    read more
  • Money and tax issues

    Financial support for those left behind, tax, and personal debt.

    read more
  • Coping with grief, and bereavement advice

    Advice for dealing with bereavement, helping others deal with grief, and information for professionals.

    read more
  • Planning ahead

    Wills, funerals, and end of life care.

    read more
  • Personal representatives

    Answers to common questions about personal representatives.

    read more
  • Death Notification Service

    Register for the free service to inform commercial organisations of the death.

    read more
  • Junk Mail Suppression Service

    How to reduce unwanted mail to the deceased and reduce the risk of identity theft.

    read more

Bereavement by suicide

Suicide is complex. It usually occurs gradually, progressing from suicidal thoughts, to planning, to attempting suicide and finally dying by suicide.

Source: International Association for Suicide Prevention

 Services for everyone bereaved by suicide

While bereavement of any kind can cause intense feelings of grief and loss, bereavement following a suicide can be particularly traumatic because of the often sudden and unexpected nature of the death and because of the knowledge that it was a deliberate act. The stigma that can still be associated with death by suicide can mean that people who have been bereaved by suicide can find it more difficult to talk about the death with the people around them and to get support. In addition to the traumatic emotional consequences that people bereaved by suicide suffer, research demonstrates that they are themselves at increased risk of dying by suicide.

The availability of services aimed specifically at people who have been bereaved by suicide is too limited across the UK. Local suicide prevention plans should include a specific objective of supporting people bereaved by suicide which involves the commissioning of suitable services. These type of services include:

  • self-help and peer support groups organised by voluntary and community groups
  • one-to-one support provided by qualified practitioners and trained facilitators
  • in-depth psychological support provided by mental health services

People bereaved by suicide also need to be provided with information about sources of help and support at the earliest opportunity. Help is at Hand is a Public Health England resource for people bereaved and affected by suicide. A frequently raised concern is that many people bereaved by suicide are unaware of the resource and are not signposted to it by services that they come into contact with. Samaritans believes that coroner’s offices, the police, health and social care services, funeral directors and faith and other community organisations could help by signposting people bereaved by suicide to Help is at Hand. Local authorities can help to promote these actions through the multi-agency suicide prevention groups that they coordinate.

Find out more about support after suicide and Help is at Hand.

 Please visit



Key trends from the Samaritans Suicide Statistics Report 2017

  • 6,188 suicides were registered in the UK and 451 in the Republic of Ireland.
  • The highest suicide rate in the UK was for men aged 40–44.
  • The highest suicide rate in the Republic of Ireland was for men aged 25–34 (with an almost identical rate for men aged 45–54).
  • Rates have increased in the UK (by 3.8%), England (by 2%), Wales (61.8%) and Northern Ireland (18.5%) since 2014 – however increases in Wales and Northern Ireland may be explained by inconsistencies in the processes for recording suicides in these countries.
  • Rates have decreased in Scotland (by 1.4%) and the Republic of Ireland (by 13.1%) since 2014.
  • There were 6,639 suicides in the UK and Republic of Ireland.
  • In England and the UK, female suicide rates are at their highest in a decade.
  • Male rates remain consistently higher than female suicide rates across the UK and Republic of Ireland – most notably 5 times higher in Republic of Ireland and around 3 times in the UK.

Samaritans' Suicide Statistics Report 2017 

When bad things happen...

Coping with traumatic events

When terrible things happen, like the recent incidents in London and Manchester, it can have a huge lasting impact on how we feel, even if we are not involved directly. 

Some common reactions are to feel angry, fearful, anxious or stressed. Others might feel extremely sad or hopeless.

If you have existing mental health problems, events like these could trigger them or make them harder to deal with.

But there is no one way to react to trauma, and however you are feeling the important thing to remember is this is ok. These are normal reactions to terrible circumstances.

That doesn’t mean they are not hard to cope with though.

Here are some resources you might find helpful if you are struggling over the next few days or weeks.

Want to talk to someone?

Feeling stressed, anxious or angry?

You could try someone of our tips on coping with stress or watch this video on relaxation. If you’re feeling angry, and are struggling to cope with it, this info might be helpful. If you’re feeling uneasy, worried or fearful, take a look at our info on coping with anxiety and panic attacks.

Feeling low or hopeless?

In many people stressful or tragic events can cause their mood to drop suddenly. Our info on depression self-care might help you if this is how you are feeling right now.

Feeling unsafe?

Traumatic events can trigger thoughts about harming yourself, hurting others or ending your life.

  • In this situation the quickest way to get help is to call 999 or go to A&E.
    But if that does not feel possible, we have some info on the other types of crisis services available here.
  • You could also try this online tool, designed by visitors to our site, to help you deal with these thoughts and feelings.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

We have been asked a lot this morning about PTSD and whether those present at last night’s events are at risk.

While it is impossible to speculate on the lasting impact to specific individuals, especially since everyone will react so differently, the Royal College of Psychiatrists have some information on the immediate impact of a traumatic event, which can tell you more about what to expect, and how to look after yourself.

If you already have a diagnosis of PTSD, it is understandable that memories and feelings from your own experiences might be on your mind more over the next few days or weeks. It may be helpful to take a look at our information on self-care.

Young people and children

We know that many of the people affected are young people or children who are particularly vulnerable.

Info for parents

Info for young people

  • Childline’s website have a huge amount of resources for young people who are struggling. You can talk to someone online, play games or watch videos which will all help you to cope today. You can also call them to talk to someone directly on 0800 1111.
  • BBC Newsround have put together some advice on what to do if you're upset too.

Emergency service staff

We know that many people from fire, ambulance and police services will have been working during both incidents. It is really important that you look after your own emotional wellbeing too.

Our Blue Light information resources might be helpful. We have a dedicated Infoline on 0300 303 5999 (open Mon-Fri 9am-6pm) if you’d like some information or support too. 

This service is open to colleagues and family members too, and doesn’t need to be about a recent incident.

The Which guide to bereavement

Coping with bereavement

Each relationship that is interrupted by death is unique and so it follows that everyone's experience of grief is unique. There is not right or wrong way to grieve and here we explain more about grief, coping with it and how to get support if necessary.

In this guide

Useful organisations and websites

To support the bereaved we have collected in one place the most relevant organisations and charities for your reference. We explain who they are and give you contact details.
Learn more about Useful organisations and websites  

Useful organisations and websites to support the bereaved

Age UK

Independent charity giving advice to older people, including advice on filling in benefits forms.
Telephone: 0800 169 6565

Alzheimer’s Society

A charity aimed at improving the lives of people living with dementia. Their online shop has many products specifically for dementia sufferers.
Telephone: 020 7423 3500
Helpline: 0300 222 11 22
Online shop:
In Scotland, contact Alzheimer Scotland – Action on dementia


A hub for bereavement information and support.

British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACUP)

The website has helpful information about types of counselling and choosing a counsellor and has a search facility to find a registered professional counsellor local to you.

Cruse Bereavement Care

The largest of the national charities providing support to bereaved people. The website has an online bookstore if you would like to read about other people’s experiences of bereavement.
Helpline: 0844 477 9400: open Monday-Friday 9.30-5pm (excluding bank holidays), with extended hours on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings, when they are open until 8pm. Calls will cost 7 pence per minute to call, plus your telephone provider's access charge.
Publications page

Carers UK

A national membership charity that champions carers’ rights, connecting and supporting carers online and in local communities.
Adviceline: 0808 808 7777

Carers Trust

A charity supporting unpaid carers, both young and old, with a carers chat forum and links to local support networks.

The Compassionate Friends

Founded to support people affected by the death of a child, this charity now also has a section of their site dedicated to people whose brother or sister has died.

Hospice UK

Search for the website of your nearest hospice’s website using the link on the home page of the Hospice UK website.


Charity for cancer care and support. Macmillan nurses can provide respite care for people caring for those with cancer.
Telephone: 0808 808 00 00  
Macmillan: coping at the end life

Marie Curie  

The website has more information about coping with bereavement, especially after living with terminal illness.
Helpline for confidential support and practical information on all aspects of terminal illness: 0800 090 2309. Open Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, Saturday 11am-5pm; closed Sunday. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.


Support available for anyone in emotional distress, all day and every day.
Helpline: 116 123, which is free to call.



Funeral costs help

Bereavement is hard enough to try and manage without the added stress that comes with arranging funerals, finding suppliers, the types of funerals available, the cost and legal requirements. 

Please visit for help. This website was created by Jan Andrews in 2014 after her partner passed away. She updates her site with a blog discussing anything she discovers. 


This page is dedicated to Andy Ashman- For life and death are one, even as the river and sea are one. Khalil Gibran. 



Bereavement Organisations

These offer information, advice, support and counselling for the bereaved, both nationally and locally. Bereavement organisations include Cruse Bereavement Care (for bereaved children, young people and adults) and The Compassionate Friends (for bereaved parents and their families).Organisations such as Winston’s Wish, the Childhood Bereavement Network and The Child Bereavement Trust also provide information and support for bereaved children, young people and their families. There may be other bereavement services in your area.


Promotes the well-being of bereaved people and helps to enable anyone bereaved by death to understand their grief and cope with their loss. The organisation provides counselling and support, information and advice.

Helpline/to find details of local branch:

Tel: 0870 167 1677

Helpline: Freephone 0844 477 9400


General email:



Cruse Bereavement Care also runs:

RD4U (the road for you)

Support, advice and a website for bereaved young people.

Helpline: Freephone 0808 808 1677 (open Monday to Friday, 9.30 am to 5.00 pm)





Offers emotional and practical support to break the isolation of those bereaved by the suicide of a close relative or friend. Downloads and a helpline available.

Helpline: 0300 111 5065 9am to 9pm every day, every day, 9:00am-9:00pm





The Compassionate Friends is a charitable organisation of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents dedicated to the support and care of other bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents who have suffered the death of a child/children. Also has an extensive range of leaflets and a postal lending library for books, audio and video tapes.

Helpline: 0845 123 2304, every day, 10:00am-4:00pm and 19:00pm-22:00pm






Local and national information and support for children, their families and caregivers.

Tel: 020 7843 6309




The Child Bereavement Charity's Support and Information Line on 01494 568900 offers a confidential service for bereaved families and professionals when a child has died and when a child is bereaved. The line is open weekdays from 9am to 5pm providing information and guidance, signposting to other agencies, support and resources. The CBC website has discussion fora for families and for professionals.

CBC has resources for bereaved children and young people, families and all professionals. It also offers a local family bereavement support service that includes support groups (CHYPS) for bereaved children who live in Buckinghamshire (see details in local services directory).

CBC's core activity is to design and provide training courses for health care and other professionals whose work brings them into contact with children and families experiencing loss and grief. Contact CBC on 01494 568910 or via

for details of their national training programme.

Information and Support Line 01494 568900 or




Resources for children, families and the professionals who support them.

Help and support service line: 0800 028 8840





Winston's Wish Helpline offers support, information and guidance to all those caring for a child of young person who has been bereaved. If you would like to talk about any aspect of supporting bereaved children and young people, the Helpline is open on weekdays and all calls are charged at the local rate.
The website provides a range of information, access to Winston's Wish's work and resources as well as activities specifically for children and young people. There is a facility to ask questions by email which will be answered by a trained clinician.

Winston's Wish also offers a national programme of support for families bereaved through suicide, murder or manslaughter.
Winston's Wish have also developed a range of resources which are available through the Helpline. Books cover issues such as how to understand cancer and how to explain serious illness or suicide to a child. A range of memory boxes and activity sheets have been designed to help families keep memories alive. Winston's Wish also offers bespoke training.

Telephone: Family Line 08452 030405 (Mon-Fri 09:00-17:00 pm and Wed 19:00pm-21:30pm)



An organisation for people who have become widows or widowers at a young age. The Foundation has a support group and the site has links to other relevant sites.

Tel: 0300 012 4929




This website has links to the following organisations:



  • Bereavement Services Portal:
    Information and support for people who’ve been bereaved.
  • Brake
    The road safety charity.
  • British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
    Find a professionally qualified counsellor in your local area.
  • Care for the Family
    Charity with a Christian emphasis that seeks to support family life.
  • Care of Police Survivors (COPS)
    National organisation which supports the families of police officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
  • Child Bereavement Network
    A national federation of organisations and individuals working with bereaved children and young people.
  • Child Bereavement UK
    Helps bereaved families.
  • Childline
    A free national helpline for children and young people on any issue or problem 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
  • Counselling Directory
    Search on postcode for a qualified counsellor in your area.
  • Cruse Bereavement Care
    Offers bereavement help, advice and counselling.
  • Daisy’s Dream
    Daisy's Dream supports children and their families affected by both life threatening illness and bereavement, throughout Berkshire and the surrounding areas.
  • Depression Alliance
    Information and support service for people affected by depression.
  • Depression UK
    A self-help charity promoting mutual support between individuals affected by depression.
  • Gingerbread
    Expert advice, practical support and campaign for single parents.
  • Gone Too Soon
    Free online memorial site.
  • Good Funeral Guide
    Advice about arranging a funeral.
  • Green Widow
    written by former WAY chairman Rachel Green to help those widowed while pregnant.
  • Grief Encounter
    Website designed to help children through bereavement.
  • If I Should Die
    Includes lots of practical information about what to do after you’ve been bereaved.
  • Inquest
    Advice to bereaved families facing an inquest.
  • Jeremiah’s Journey
    Bereavement support for children and families based in Plymouth.
  • London Bereavement Network
    Forum for bereavement services in Greater London.
  • London Friend- Lesbian & Gay Bereavement
    A voluntary organisation serving the lesbian, gay and bisexual and transgender community, with a Bereavement Helpline.
  • Maytree
    Sanctuary for the suicidal.
  • Merry Widow
    Information for widows written by a young widowed mother called Kate Boydell.
  • Mind
    Provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.
  • Much Loved Tribute Site
    Set up a tribute to a loved one.
  • National Association of Widows
    Self-help group run by widows for widows.
  • National Children’s Bureau
    Promotes the interests and well-being of all children and young people across every aspect of their lives.
  • Nelson's Journey
    Support for bereaved children and young people in Norfolk. 
  • Noah’s Ark Trust
    Supports bereaved children, young people and families in Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
  • Parent Lifeline
    National helpline.
    Catch them before they fall, providing emotional guidance for children.
  • Rethink National Advice Service
    Help for people affected by mental illness.
  • Richmond's Hope
    Bereavement support centre for children (aged 4-16) and their families in Edinburgh.
  • Road Peace
    Support for bereaved and injured road crash victims.
  • SADS
    Information for the family and relatives of a young person who has died of Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome (SADS), sometimes called sudden adult death syndrome.
  • SAMM
    Support after murder and manslaughter. 
  • Saneline
    Practical information, crisis care and emotional support to anybody affected by mental health problems.
  • Scattering Ashes
    Lots of practical tips about what to do with your loved one’s ashes.
  • Simon Says
    Bereavement support for children in Hampshire.
  • Small Families Holidays
    Single parent holiday company.
  • Sudden Trauma Information Service Helpline
    A confidential helpline service for survivors of all kinds of sudden trauma. 
  • Support and Care after Road Death and Injury (SCARD)
    SCARD aims to: help relieve distress among people who have been bereaved, injured or affected by road death or injury.
  • Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide
    Exists to meet the needs and break the isolation of those bereaved by the suicide of a close relative or friend.
  • Tell us Once
    A government scheme designed to help people who have been newly bereaved to reduce the number of organisations they have to contact about their loved one’s death.
  • The Bereavement Advice Centre
    Support and advice for people about what they need to do after a death.
  • The Bereavement Register
    Service where you can register the details of someone who has died so that companies involved in direct marketing can remove this person's details from their mailing lists and prevent you receiving unwanted and distressing mail and telephone calls.
  • The Citizens Advice Bureau
    A service that helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice, and by influencing policy makers.
  • The Dove Service
    Counselling and support for bereaved children, young people and families in Staffordshire & S. Cheshire.
  • The Samaritans
    Confidential emotional support for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair.
  • Victim Support
    The national charity giving free and confidential help to victims of crime, witnesses, their family, friends and anyone else affected across England and Wales.
  • Winston’s Wish
    Winston's Wish Helpline offers support, information and guidance to all those caring for a child of young person who has been bereaved





Your GP may be able to help you during bereavement either by listening and offering emotional

support, by prescribing drugs for problems like sleeplessness or depression if needed, or by advising

you about other sources of support and referring you to a counsellor, bereavement organisation or

psychiatrist, for example. If there’s not a health professional you normally talk to, you can call

NHS Choices on 111.



End of Life Care

Please have a look at the END OF LIFE CARE setion for more information about bereavement.

What to do when someone dies