Death is something that connects us all. No matter who we are, whatever our background, we all will eventually die. But yet we avoid the subjects of dying, death and bereavement and this lack of openness has an impact on the quality and range of support and care services available to patients and families. It has also affected our ability to die where or how we would wish.

Gemma from Hornchurch has personally had experience of this through her work at the BHURT mortuary and has decided to hold a Death Cafe on the 16th May at The Fatling, Hornchurch

What is a Death Cafe? Well, a Death Cafe is an organisation who advocate and promote the discussions of death in a positive way and a Death Cafe event itself is a place to go and talk to other people about death.

Gemma says:

It is very much in the vein of the Death Positive movement that I am a full supporter of. I honestly think that the world would be a better place and we would all be a bit happier about it if we just spoke about death a bit more!

The event on the 16th May also coincides with Dying Matters week. Dying Matters is an organisation based in England & Wales who encourage people to talk about death, dying and bereavement. They were originally started by the Department of Health and now work with NHS UK.

They aim to get everyone to the stage of ‘a good death’ where people are aware of the wishes of the dying and deceased. Dying Matters week 2018 runs from the 14th to the 20th May and their homepage has a lot more information and details of events that may be closer to home for you.

If you do fancy it, come along to the pub on the 16th. There will be drinks, food available if you would like it and plenty of discussions around death.

The evening will have no specific themes or objectives, other than getting together to promote a fundamental change in society in which dying, death and bereavement will be seen and accepted as the natural part of everybody’s life cycle

I’m eager for the conversation to flow naturally and there’s no pressure to share anything you don’t want to.

The flyer for the event is below for more information, if you want to print this or would like a printed copy to display somewhere you can contact Gemma on her blog , on Twitter or at

You can find out more about the history of the Death Cafe and how they started at