Sa​fe Hands

Funeral Services Ltd.

Tel:01903 741444/ 07598 278191

Available 24 Hours   


You're​ in safe hands.....

When someone passes away in Hospital or Care Home

If a loved one passes away in hospital, the next of kin or closest family members will be informed. Most hospitals throughout the England have staff whom specialise in bereavement services and will explain procedures and next steps to you.

A doctor at the hospital will usually issue a Medical Certificate if the cause of death is known. If the cause of death is unknown or not yet confirmed, the hospital will ask the next of kin’s permission to carry out a post-mortem.   If a loved one has died in hospital, they will be kept in the hospital mortuary until you can arrange for Safe Hands Funeral Services, or family, to collect them.  If your loved one is being collected by a Safe Hands we will liaise with the hospital to arrange bringing your loved one into our care & dedicated facilities.  You would usually need to sign an authorisation form to enable us to do so however, this has changed slightly due to the Covid-19 pandemic, you no longer have to sign this authority removal form, instead inform the hospital bereavement team we are your chosen funeral director, and we in turn will supply the hospital mortuary staff of the contact details of the next of Kin, or the person making the funeral arrangements.

In A Care Home

Care home staff will often help you to notify your chosen funeral director and liaise with them on your behalf.  Safe Hands Funeral Services will collect your loved one and transfer them safely to our own specialised facilities in Storrington West Sussex.  Care home staff are trained to ensure that your loved one is properly looked after. They will usually be moved to their room, or another private space, where they can lie in peace until the family have been notified, the medical certificate of the cause of death provided and Safe Hands are able to collect the person.


What to do when someone passes away at home

If someone dies at home and the death was expected  

(i.e your loved one had a terminal illness)

If an expected death happens at home during the day, you will need to contact their GP or the NHS helpline Tel:111 as soon as possible.  The death will need to be verified by a medical practitioner and the GP notified so that they can certify the death.

If your loved one passes away at night, you should still call the NHS helpline (dial 111) and they will advise you on what to do next. You can wait until the morning before contacting their GP.

If the cause of death is known,and the GP has seen your loved one in the 14 days  prior to their passing, the doctor will issue a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death, allowing you to register the death. You should also contact Safe Hands Funeral Services immediately to arrange for them to bring your loved one into our care.


If someone dies at home and the death was unexpected

If the death was unexpected, you must call the  Ambulance and Police services immediately by dialing 999. The operator will provide instructions on what you need to do including establishing whether you can try to resuscitate the person. The paramedics, upon arrival, will either attempt resuscitation or confirm the death.


If the cause of death is unknown, the Police will arrange for a funeral director to collect the deceased and take them into their care, acting on behalf of the Coroner if the death is unexpected.

If the medical professional is unsure about the actual cause of death, even if it was clearly from natural causes, or if the deceased died suddenly or unnaturally, they will contact the coroner. The coroner may order a post-mortem examination or inquest to determine the cause of death and then issue the documents allowing the death to be registered.

It is important to note that a funeral cannot be conducted until the Coroner’s have established cause of death, if an inquest is necessary, they may issue an interim death certificate.

Once the cause of death is established the medical certificate will be issued, after which you can register the death with the local registrar.   In light of current restrictions, your surgery  will arrange for the Medical Cause of Death Certificate  (MCCD) to be sent directly to the registrar and funeral director, without you needing to attend their premises in person.   You can then go online to book a telephone appointment with the registrar, who will email the Cremation/burial certificate (green form) directly to Safe Hands Funeral Services.

Local Registrars Offices

Storrington Registration Office

Storrington Library

Ryecroft Lane

RH20 4PA

Tel: 01243 642122


Worthing Registration office                                              

Richmond road

Portland House

BN11 1HS

Tel: 01243 642122        



Littlehampton Registration office

Arun Civic Centre

Maltravers Road

Littlehampton

BN17 5LF

Tel:01243 642122



Brighton & Hove Registration office

Town Hall

Bartholomew Square

Brighton

BN1 1JA

Tel:01273 292016


Horsham Registration  Office

Park House

North StreetHorsham

RH12 9SB

Tel: 01243 642122


Burgess Hill Registration office

96 Church Walk

Burgess Hill

RH15 9AS

Tel: 01243 642122




The cost of each death certificate is £11

The registrar will guide you through how many copies you may require.



Chichester Registration office
3 Orchard Street
Chichester
PO19 1DD
Tel: 01243 642122

Midhurst Registration office
The Grange
Bepton Road
Midhurst
GU29 9HD
Tel: 01243 642122

Bognor Regis Registration office
Durban House
South Bersted Business Park
Durban Road
Bognor Regis
PO22 9RE
Tel: 01243 642122

Shoreham By Sea Registration office
Health centre
Pond Road
Shoreham By Sea
BN43 5US
Tel:01243 642122

Crawley Registration office
West Sussex County council
Southgate Avenue
Crawley
RH10 6HG
Tel:01243 642122



Other useful numbers:

Bereavement office contact numbers:

Worthing 01903 285019

St Richards 01243 831668

Royal Sussex County 01273 696955

Extn 64611

Princess Royal 01444 441881 

(ask for bereavement office)


Coroners contact numbers:

Worthing 01273 404012

Chichester 01273 404012

Brighton Woodvale 01273 292046

Horsham 01273 404163


Bereavement Support

GriefChat https://www.griefchat.co.uk      GriefChat is free of charge and is open Monday-Friday, 9am-9pm (UK time) to grieving or bereaved people.

Winston’s Wish

The Freephone National Helpline is free to call on 08088 020 021 and offers therapeutic advice following a bereavement. Bereavement support for parents, carers and professionals who are looking for childhood bereavement advice & support. https://www.winstonswish.org/


Cruse Bereavement Care                              The Bereavement Advice Centre                              The Compassionate Friends       www.cruse.org.uk                                               www.bereavementadvice.org                                                 www.tcf.org.uk 

                                                                                                                                                                      National Helpline: 0345 123 2304