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Public Health Funerals - East Northants Area

Information on public burials and exhumations

The Council is responsible for arranging the funeral of any person who has died within the East Northamptonshire area where it appears that no other agency or persons are making suitable arrangements for the disposal of the body. This most often occurs when no next of kin can be found.


This does not apply to anyone who dies in hospital or in an ambulance on the way to hospital. Under these circumstances, the responsibility lies with the health authority.

Legal requirements

The council has a duty under section 46 of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act of 1984 to "cause to be buried or cremated the body of any person who has died or found to be dead" within the district, and where it appears "that no suitable arrangements for the disposal of the body have been or are being made".

The council is entitled to recover the costs of the funeral from the estate of the deceased, in the form of a civil debt recoverable within three years.

Freedom of Information Requests - Public Health Funerals

For our current listing of Public Health Funerals arranged for the East Northamptonshire area please download the Register of Public Health Funerals.  You can also view the council's Public Health Funeral Policy.

We will update this register within 10 days of undertaking a funeral or if we later refer a matter to The Treasury Solicitor.

Estates valued over £500

Estates valued over £500 are referred to Bona Vacantia who also maintain a register.