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University pays tribute to body donors

19 Apr 2010

Service of Thanksgiving on 27 April in Whitworth Hall

The University of Manchester is holding a Service of Thanksgiving in memory of the public-spirited people who have donated their bodies for the teaching of anatomy to its medical, dental and science students in the past academic year.

It is the third such Service and the first at its new venue, on campus, the Whitworth Hall. It will be held on Tuesday 27 April 2010, 12.30pm for 12.45pm. Each year the University accepts about 40 bodies of people from the Manchester area who have indicated prior to their death that they wish to donate their bodies for this purpose. The Service is unrelated to the final committal or funeral service of any individual, but, rather, is intended as an opportunity for the public-spirited actions of the donors to be acknowledged. It is non-denominational and members of the congregation do not need to be of any particular religious affiliation or, indeed, to hold any religious belief, to attend the Service.

Professor of Anatomy Alan Crossman said: "The body donors' selfless and public-spirited actions benefit the education of around 2000 students each year. The Service of Thanksgiving has become an annual event and last year it was attended by approximately 400 people, including many relatives and friends of the deceased. From the feedback we received, it is clear that the Service was greatly appreciated by those close to the donors.

"The congregation also included current students, academic, administrative, postgraduate and support staff, senior University representatives, senior civic officials and clergy. I am delighted to say that this year, once again, representatives of our students will take an active part in the Service."