Reform and Liberal leaders ease cap on funeral mourners
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Reform and Liberal leaders ease cap on funeral mourners

'We still encourage clergy to consider positive alternatives to physical attendance'

Woodland cemetery
Woodland cemetery

Reform and Liberal Judaism leaders have begun to ease a cap on the number of mourners permitted to attend a funeral of a close relative.

The maximum number allowed to attend funerals is now 5 at Cheshunt’s Jewish Woodland Cemetery and is to be 12 at Edgwarebury Cemetery.

A maximum of 10 mourners at a time can attend Golders Green Crematorium.

The rules, unveiled in a joint letter by the Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors and the Assembly of Reform Rabbis and Cantors, only apply to mourners from the same household as the deceased and close family members.

Social distancing restrictions will remain in place across all venues.

The letter said: “We still encourage clergy to consider positive alternatives to physical attendance, it is essential that we support families in feeling able to make the decision to continue using technology.

“We have experienced that participating virtually can provide much needed support that can be more meaningful than a small number attending and feeling alone or isolated or that families and friends have to make impossible decisions about who can and cannot attend.

“It does of course remain important to remind you all that people who are shielding or self-isolating will not be allowed at the cemetery and all government guidance regarding this will be strictly adhered to.”

The latest lockdown rules, implemented on 1 June, permit outdoor gatherings of up to six members of different households in England, provided strict social distancing guidelines are followed.

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