Special tree tribute to lost loved ones launched

Co-op Funeralcare Christmas tree memorials

Stars will be hosted at East Devon Crematorium - Credit: CO-OP

An East Devon crematorium will be hosting special stars remembering lost loved ones this Christmas.

Southern Co-op is sending special greetings cards to families they have looked after who have lost a loved one in the past 12 months, with the cards including a pop-out star to let their memories shine bright.

They are then being invited to hang the stars on memory trees being put up in Southern Co-op branches of The Co-operative Funeralcare throughout December, including at the East Devon Crematorium in Whimple.

The trees are open to everyone in order to give them the opportunity to write a personal message to someone who is no longer with them this Christmas.

Lesley Hadley, bereavement coordinator from Southern Co-op's free Bereavement Care service, said the company hoped the trees would provide a fitting memorial for families this Christmas.

"This is a meaningful way to acknowledge the absence of our loved ones, and make a start on creating new rituals and traditions that will include them," she said.

"If you are finding this time of year hard, remember to be kind to yourself. 

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"It's okay to spend time in quiet contemplation if you would prefer that to being 'jollied along' by well-meaning friends and family.

"Give yourself the opportunity to do what makes you feel most comfortable, rather than what others think you should be doing."

For more details, and the full address details of branches taking part in the initiative, can be found online at www.funeralcare.co.uk.

Information on free bereavement support is available on www.bereavementsupportgroups.co.uk.