In a previous post I mused on the black-and-white cones at a church I visited. This is automobile funerary material culture! It is a spreading trend! It tells us about the man close connections between death and car transportation in contemporary society. Likewise, it relates to considerations of how near-impossible it is to visit crematoria and cemeteries without a car, as I’ve discussed regarding the limitations of crematorium and drive thru death. Newly designed crematoria are dominated by car transportation material cultures, parking spaces and drives.
What I hadn’t realised is how widespread these black-and-white cones might be. In the lychgate of a Flintshire churchyard, I found more of them. While the Lancashire examples were smart and bore crosses and the word ‘FUNERAL’ (readily purchased on the internet), these look far more makeshift, old and battered, evidently DIY adaptations of their orange brethren. Moreover, they have been augmented and joined by many of their orange cousins to support the funerary cause of facilitating parking at the church.
Again, I haven’t seen them deployed. They are simply a version of a commonplace device for cordoning off sections of pavement and roadside for designated parking for large functions and gatherings. Yet, they are a distinctive funerary adaption of the colour black to denote funerary items and material cultures.
They hit the news, as in Hartlepool, and in Forres, where they are reported from a few years back as a new initiative to combat inconsiderate drivers. In Barry, they are even stolen sometimes by either weirdos or those angry about parking restrictions. For some, clearly, cones are required, for others, cones are an imposition of control on the freedom-loving motorist who might cause deaths, but won’t be denied parking because of them.