(Maidstone, June 27th 2019) – The Cremation Society has announced that Professor Hilary Grainger OBE has been elected as the next Chair of the Cremation Society. She will succeed retiring Chairman Harvey Thomas CBE, who has served in the role for 10 years, on July 3rd 2019.

The formal change-over will take place in the Southampton Ageas Hilton Hotel at the conclusion of the Annual Conference (CBCE), jointly hosted by the Cremation Society and the Federation of Burial and Cremation Authorities.

Professor Grainger is a graduate of Leeds University and recently retired as Dean of Academic Strategy at the London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London. She remains a Professor of Architectural History at the University and is an Honorary Professor in the Department of Theology and Religion at Durham University. A specialist in late nineteenth and early twentieth century English domestic architecture, she is the leading authority on the architecture of British Crematoria and on the late Victorian architect Sir Ernest George. She has published and lectured widely in Europe and America and her pioneering book, “Death Redesigned: British Crematoria, History, Architecture and Landscape”, published in 2006, received a commendation from the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals as an outstanding reference book.

Professor Grainger is co-author of “Cremation in Modern Scotland: History, Architecture and the

Law” and is A Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) Institutional Reviewer of English and Scottish Universities.   She is President of the Association for the Study of Death and Society (ASDS) and chairs the Fabric Advisory Committee of Lichfield Cathedral. She was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 2018 New Year’s Honours List for Services to Higher Education. Hilary has been a member of the Cremation Society’s Council since 2008

Retiring Chairman, Harvey Thomas CBE, said: “I am delighted that Hilary has been elected Chair of the Society. She has made many strategic contributions since she joined the Council in 2008 and she has an extraordinary knowledge of UK cremation and crematoria, which will be invaluable as she leads the Society forward.”

The Cremation Society, a registered charity, was established in 1874 and has been the pioneer of cremation and best practice in Great Britain. It established the first crematorium in the country at Woking in 1885 and the first crematorium in London at Golders Green in 1902.

Lord de Mauley is Honorary President of the Cremation Society which today, in co-operation with the International Cremation Federation (ICF) continues to lead the Cremation Movement through research; encouraging best practice; Government liaison; collating statistical data; co-hosting the annual “Cremation & Burial Communication & Education” event (CBCE) and producing Pharos International – the official quarterly Journal of the Cremation Society and the ICF.

For more information visit or contact: Mrs Wendy Buchan

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   Tel: 01622 688292

Pin It