Kingston Hospital is hosting a 'Death Café' event this Thursday (May 16).

The NHS Foundation Trust hospital will adopt the popular discussion format as part of Dying Matters Week 2019.

A spokesperson for Kingston Hospital, who are co-hosting the event with colleagues from the Princess Alice Hospital Trust in Esher, said the event would be a friendly, open talk and was aimed at raising awareness about issues surrounding death and grievance.

"At a Death Café people drink tea/coffee, eat cake and discuss death. The aim is to increase awareness of death to help people make the most of their (finite) lives.

"The Death Café gives people a safe informal space to discuss death, dying, and grief," Kingston Hospital said.

Death Cafés have become increasingly popular in recent years.

It's thought they first appeared in France as 'Cafe Mortels' around 2004, and have been attributed to the ideas of Swiss Sociologist Bernard Crettaz, who wanted to break taboos in society surrounding subjects like dying and grieving for the dead.

The term Death Café itself was coined by Jon Underwood, who lived in Hackney and introduced the format to London in 2011.

Underwood died in 2017, while the model has been exported from London with around 65 countries having hosted Death Cafés since he founded the concept.

Kingston Hospital urged people who were interested or just curious to talk about these subjects to join in, recommending attendees stay open-minded during the discussions.

A spokesperson said: "Come and see what it’s all about but please leave any professional views at the door, come as yourself.

"All are welcome to attend this event."

The Café will take place in Lecture Theatre 2, Education Centre, 5th floor Kingston Surgical Centre, Kingston Hospital, Galsworthy Road, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, KT2 7QB.

Dying Matters Awareness Week 2019 is taking place from 13th May-19th May – for more information visit: