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Conducting a funeral

When we carry out a funeral our ‘funeral director’ or conductor will ensure that everything runs as smoothly and reverently as possible.  He will walk the hearse to and from the family home if required.  But have you ever wondered why this happens?  Well, one theory is that the answer to this harks back to when funerals were horse drawn.  When a funeral took place the cortege would be walked away from the house and there would be funeral staff, ‘known as pages’ walking either side of the horse drawn hearse.  Mourners would have their floral tributes placed on their garden gates and the conductor would indicate to the pages to collect any floral tributes and place them on the hearse walking slowly so as not to miss any of the tributes.  This tradition is still carried on today however the ‘pages’ are generally now more for show and the walk in front of the hearse is more one of respect rather than a practical task.