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Who we are

The Founders of The Natural Death Centre:

Nicholas Albery, founder of The Natural Death Centre

The Natural Death Centre was founded in 1991 by Nicholas Albery and his wife, psychotherapist Josefine Speyer.

A break up in their relationship some years earlier had led Josefine to see a link between the process of dying and that of giving birth, and she had explored the subject in some depth. Her acquired knowledge came in useful during when Nicholas's father died and communication was very difficult. Nicholas and Josefine had long discussions and felt that there was a need for death education, along similar lines to sex education.

They set up the Natural Death Centre with three aims in mind:

  • To help break the taboo around dying and death, and to make it a natural topic to discuss over dinner.
  • To bring the dying person back to the centre of proceedings and enable them to die at home if they so wished.
  • To empower people and make them aware of their legal rights and choices, taking the power away from institutions.

Nicholas died in a car accident on June 3rd 2001.His funeral was organised by Josefine, with help from family and friends. He was buried in a bamboo woven coffin, on private land where they owned a little hut in the woods and had spent many happy times. The funeral took a whole day and involved a journey to the land, a Quaker style ceremony around the coffin in the field, a procession to the grave side, song, music, poetry, recounting of memories, Tibetan prayer flags, a Christian blessing, a tea party, and a dance around the grave at the end of the day.

Nicholas's obituary in The Guardian can be read here.


Our staff


Natural Death Centre Manager

Rosie Inman-Cook

Rosie Inman-Cook 


If you call our Helpline or contact us by e-mail, it will probably be Rosie who responds. 

Rosie has many years experience in the Natural Death Movement. Winner of the NDCs award for 'Best Natural Burial Ground in the UK'. Rosie values liasing with the public to inform them of all options available, including pragmatic advice on DIY funerals. She is experienced at cultivating relationships with Funeral Directors, encouraging the choices offered to all families and enjoys working with landowners looking to establish new burial sites.

Rosie has many years practice with the media in multiple formats and has been a Director of several successful and leading companies.

Rosie is a mum of four and now a Grandmother and is a keen knowledgeable amateur naturalist.

Contact Rosie on 01962 712690 or contact@naturaldeath.org.uk

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The Board of Trustees


Susan Morris (Trustee & Company Secretary)

Susan Morris

An experienced palliative care clinical nurse specialist. Susan believes deeply in support and advocacy for the dying, and funeral advice.  Susan has been involved with the Natural Death Centre for over twenty years, and is a former trustee of both The Befriending Network and The Nicholas Albery Foundation. Susan was honoured with the Welch Allyn UK Pioneers of Care Award, June 2012 for her trailblazing voluntary work within the Natural Death movement as part of the NDC in educating the public about dying and funerals.

Contact Susan at susan@naturaldeath.org.uk

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Richard Putt

Richard Putt

The first non-family director with one of the oldest established funeral firms in London, and a Past National President of The British Institute of Funeral Directors, Richard comes from a more traditional funeral directing background but embraces the values of the Natural Death Centre and is committed to attaining maximum choice for our bereaved. 

Freeman of the City of London, member of The Worshipful Company of Upholders and The Royal Society of St George, FA Referee and Coach, Richard is married to the lovely Sam, with four wonderful children and two amazing grandchildren. He is currently in a minority of one as the only man involved with running the NDC!

Contact Richard at richard@naturaldeath.org.uk

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The New Natural Death Handbook fifth edition is out now, this book is a must read for everyone. Completely revised and expanded into a boxed set of three books... Read more

Credit to Will Whipple (photographer)



Links and Resources




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