Researcher wins award for film documenting experiences of Covid-19 bereaved families

CBFJ's Fran Hall with the report at The National Covid Memorial Wall

A researcher from the University of Liverpool Management School has won an award for making a powerful film reflecting the experiences of those who lost loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Professor Lynn Sudbury Riley, who lost her father when he contracted COVID-19 while in hospital for a foot operation in March 2020, conducted research into The Lived Experiences of People Bereaved by COVID-19 in 2021. The research report made its way to Government Minister’s desks and prompted questions in the House of Commons.

It was backed by Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice (CBFJ) – the group representing those who lost family members and friends during the pandemic.

Professor Sudbury-Riley used pathographies (stories of illness experience) to collect the narratives of 28 people who lost 30 relatives to COVID-19, with data collection taking place in June 2021.

Following the research, Professor Sudbury-Riley worked with bereaved families and research participants to make an emotional film, A Death Like No Other: The Lived Experience of Covid-19 Bereavement, detailing the experiences of those left behind, and calling for truth and transparency through the inquiry process.

The video features moving testimony from research participants who lost family members, and Elkan Abrahamson, Director of Broudie Jackson Canter solicitors, whose law firm is representing the Bereaved Families for Justice at the COVID-19 Public Inquiry

Last week, Professor Sudbury-Riley was presented with the ‘Best First Time Filmmaker’ award at the Association for Consumer Research Conference in Seattle for her work on the film.

Lynn Sudbury Riley holding her award

The Covid-19 Public Inquiry is currently hearing evidence from high-profile figures, such as former Prime Minister Boris Johnson about decision making at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Professor Sudbury Riley, an expert in services for vulnerable people, including end of life care, said: “I would like to thank everyone who took part and shared their experiences, to ensure that my film could be made to shine a light on the uniquely traumatic experience of Covid-19 bereavement.

“As the Public Inquiry finally hears evidence from high-profile figures, I hope that the film can continue to keep focus on the experiences of bereaved families and ensure that what they had to go through is never repeated.”

You can watch A Death Like No Other here:

To read the full The Lived Experiences of People Bereaved by Covid-19 report, by Professor Lynn Sudbury-Riley, please visit