A short guide to the Death Cafe

What is the Death Café?

At Death Cafes people come together in a relaxed and safe setting to discuss life and death, drink tea and eat delicious cake. The objective of Death Cafe is “To increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives”.

“Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it! I say. Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows.” – Pope Paul VI, Italian pope, 1897-1978

The idea of running Death Cafes came from the work of Swiss sociologist Bernard Crettaz. Jon Underwood has brought the idea to the UK. The first Death Cafe took place in Jon’s basement in September 2011. Since then Death Cafes have been held in the Royal Festival Hall, a yurt, cool cafes and people’s houses. Over 200 people have so far attended a Death Café in the UK. The events have invariably been very special and feedback has been fantastic.

Death Cafes are always offered:

On a not for profit basis though, to be sustainable, we try to cover expenses through donations and fundraising

In an accessible, respectful and confidential space, free of discrimination, where people can express their views safely

With no intention of leading participants towards any particular conclusion, product or course of action