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These coffins might cheer you up

Show in London displays burial caskets which put a twist on the final departure.

AN EXHIBITION IN London is approaching death with a lighter heart by displaying some very unusual coffin designs.

Boxed: Fabulous Coffins from the UK and Ghana features caskets shaped like vintage Mercedes, a lion, a corkscrew and even a ballet pump. The show was inspired, according to the UK Design Week blog, by Ghanian designer Paa Joe, who first begin making unusual coffins in 1951 when he laid his own mother to rest in one shaped like an aeroplane because she had never managed to take a flight on one during her lifetime.

Some coffins on display at the Royal Festival Hall show come from a firm called Crazy Coffins of Nottingham. The exhibition is part of the Death: Southbank Centre’s Festival for the Living.

These coffins might cheer you up
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  • Boxed exhibition

    A sled-shaped coffin commissioned by Richard Mullard who wants to get buried with his skis on.
  • Boxed exhibition

    A plane-shaped coffin commissioned by Malcolm Brocklehurst.
  • Boxed exhibition

    A cocoa pod-shaped coffin.
  • Boxed exhibition

    A young boy plays with a lion-shaped coffin.
  • Boxed exhibition

    Side-on view of the lion-shaped coffin.
  • Boxed exhibition

    A ballet shoe-shaped coffin commissioned by ballet fan Pat Cox.
  • Boxed exhibition

    The skateboard-shaped coffin to the foreground was commissioned for an 11-year-old boy who died but went everywhere with his skateboard.
  • Boxed exhibition

    A guitar-shaped coffin, commissioned by the family of a teenage boy, and a skip-shaped coffin, commissioned by contractor John Gratton-Fisher.
  • Boxed exhibition

    The Before I Die wall, where members of the public write what they want to do before they die, which forms part of the Boxed: Fabulous Coffins from the UK and Ghana collection at the Royal festival Hall in London.

(All images Ian West/PA Wire/Press Association Images)

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