Kris Hallenga’s Living FUNeral inspires us to thing out of the box!

FUNeral view in Truro cathedral

Kris Hallenga’s fun-filled living funeral which took place on June 10th has sparked buzz on social media around the idea of throwing yourself a funeral - while you’re still alive to enjoy it. While the idea of a living funeral may seem radical to many, Kris’ Instagram post about her own “FUNeral” has sparked social media users’ curiosity.


Here’s a round-up of all the posts and mentions Kris’ FUNeral received online:

- Kris’ FUNeral post gets more than 34,000 likes on Instagram

- Twitter and Instagram users love the idea of a living funeral

- Dawn French, Giovanna Fletcher & Fearne Cotton’s heartfelt posts about attending Kris Hallenga’s living funeral

- Why Kris Hallenga chose to throw her own FUNeral


Kris’ Instagram post featuring photos from the celebration garnered more than 34,000 likes and hundreds of supportive comments from fans. Instagrammer Fanny McPhee who is also battling cancer commented that she too was as excited for her own living funeral, and another user paulineroe19 said that her 80-something year old aunt was also throwing herself a living wake!

Many followers were inspired by the idea of having a living funeral themselves. On Kris’ post Instagrammer vreevie commented “The future is FUNeral!” and pinkhouseliving said “There is no way I’m departing this earth without having a FUNeral one day. Just the best idea EVER.”

Other attendees included adventurer Gail Muller, and Top of the Pops’ presenter Fearne Cotton who described the FUNeral as a “euphoric celebration of life”.

Kris’ friend, presenter and Festifeel co-organiser Sarah Carless posted that she was glad to be “part of this very unique, bonkers, weird, special day that I can now say this is the best way to do a funeral, FUNerals are the way forward.”

Why Kris Hallenga chose to throw her own funeral
In the caption Kris explained why she chose to arrange a living funeral for herself, saying she wanted to “celebrate a life that I have truly loved, surrounded by people I loved.”

Famous Friends in Attendance
Dawn French posted photos from the event on Twitter and Instagram where she gave a eulogy in her “Vicar of Dibley” costume, which received thousands of likes and messages of support. The photos included selfies with Kris showing off their quirky makeup and Kris’ sparkly silver gown and matching glitter “hair”. In French’s own words she “gave it some Dibley” and said the event was “PHENOMENAL”.

Claire, a Twitter follower, said “I totally agree with living FUNerals as I quite often think, oh I wish this person was here to see what a beautiful funeral it was!”

CBeebies presenter and winner of I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! Giovanna Fletcher also attended the FUNeral. Giovanna, who is a CoppaFeel! Patron and host of podcast Happy Baby, Happy Mum, posted a black and white photo of Kris striking a pose in a silver sparkly dress, along with a heartfelt caption for her friend. She ended her emotional post saying “Thank you for the perfect day and for encouraging us all to think about our own wants and needs (big shout out to @legacyoflives for all the support they’ve given you).”

Kris Hallenga’s Living Funeral and The Farewell Guide Featured in the Media
Kris’ living funeral, organised by The Farewell Guide, has been featured in The Telegraph, The Daily Mail, Virgin Radio, The Evening Standard, Mirror, The Sun, Entertainment Daily, Metro UK, Yahoo News, Daily Express and more.

Kris talked to The Telegraph about what it was like attending her own funeral, have a read here.  


Writer Grace Pengelly also wrote a piece titled “Befriending Our Mortality” inspired by Kris’ FUNeral where she asks the question: “Could we instead choose to befriend our mortality, and express gratitude for the clarifying role that it plays in our life?” 

What is a living funeral?

A living funeral is a funeral held for a living person. While there are many reasons for having a living funeral, the biggest one is to celebrate a person’s life with all their loved ones. A living funeral may also be called a “living wake” or a “pre-funeral”. People who arrange their own living funeral may have a terminal illness, are nearing the end of their life, or even just want to throw themselves a big party as a celebration of their life. For many it can be a wonderful feeling to actually experience and enjoy their funeral with their friends and family. If you opt for a living funeral, you also have complete control over what you would like your funeral to be like.


How to Arrange a Living Funeral

Kris Hallenga, CoppaFeel! founder, shared her experience organising her living funeral using The Farewell Guide free funeral planner  on her Instagram page in June.

On the easy-to-use free tool on The Farewell Guide website you can plan your own living funeral exactly to your own specifications. This means you can choose your own music (Kris opted for Bryan Adams plus an ABBA sing-a-long!), dress code, games or activities, or even whether you’d like your funeral to be eco-friendly.


While arranging a living funeral is a very personal choice, Kris Hallenga’s bold celebration of her life on social media has sparked discussion around living funerals and funeral pre-planning. Many people are now exploring the idea of arranging their own funerals, and the task couldn’t be made easier with The Farewell Guide free funeral wishes tool found here.