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One-in-five funerals disrupted by phone calls

MOBILE phones are making it increasingly difficult to rest in peace – with almost a fifth of funerals interrupted by obtrusive ringing.

A survey of 2,000 people found that two-in-five people do not turn their phone off during a funeral service, and a small percentage of mourners refuse to turn down the volume.

One-in-16 people admitted to accidentally receiving a message on their phone during a funeral, while one in six said they had seen others trying to frantically turn off a ringing phone. Examples included the tune If You're Happy And You Know It Clap Your Hands blaring as a coffin was lowered and a mourner's mobile ringing as he gave a eulogy.

A separate survey of 170 funeral directors by The Co-operative Funeralcare found that almost a fifth of funerals had been interrupted by mobile phones.


David Collingwood, operations director of The Co-operative Funeralcare, said: "We are witnessing a cultural shift in society's stance on funeral etiquette.

"Although people universally despise the use of mobile phones at funerals, many exercise double standards by frowning upon the use of mobiles by others when they are unwilling to turn the sound down or turn their own phone off.

"As people become ever more time-pressed and ever more welded to their phones, the use of mobiles has become commonplace at events which would have been considered unthinkable a few years ago, and none more so than at a funeral."

"We would encourage people to turn off their phones at a funeral as a sign of respect for the deceased and their family," Mr Collingwood added.