Stories

May 2017

Village of sacrifice

In the heart of rural Derbyshire a village stands as a monument to both tragedy and sacrifice…

New home for Unsaid messages

Some of the most heartfelt ‘goodbye’ messages are now available to view online – and site visitors can also leave their own message for someone special.

Associations unite on regulation

Funeral directors from across Scotland came together at a conference in Stirling to pledge to work with the Scottish Government on introducing regulation to the sector.

The pledge follows the passing of the Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016, which includes the introduction of a statutory inspector of funeral directors, regulations governing the profession and the possible licensing of funeral directors.

Funeral directors sent to the Tower

A funeral for a relative of a Tower of London employee took place at the historic site.

New president wants to ‘make a difference’

Regulation and the Social Fund Funeral payment are just two of the key issues singled out by SAIF’s new national president as key for funeral directors.

March 2017

Sharing the cost

Peter Toulson’s funeral wasn’t particularly unusual. It took place in a chapel at Leeds's Lawnswood Crematorium, and included a mid-range coffin, Bitter Sweet Symphony by The Verve, and tributes and stories from friends. However, it was paid for people who were pretty much strangers.

Glasgow has poorest life expectancy

Scotland as a whole has the poorest life expectancy of any of the UK nations, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), with Glasgow showing the lowest of any area.
Scotland recorded 1,177 deaths per 100,000 of population in 2015, compared to England's rate of 989.6.

Crazy Coffins at the Southbank

Bespoke coffin company Crazy Coffins made a special appearance at London’s Royal Festival Hall.
A dozen of its creations – including a ballet shoe, a skip and a Viking longship – were on display as part of the Belief and Beyond Belief festival running at the Southbank Centre throughout 2017.

Sharing approach builds community

A family funeral firm in Country Durham has developed a programme of community activities that gives their business a social focus.

Valerie Greenwood: obituary

Valerie Greenwood, one of the best-known funeral arrangers in the southeast has passed away. 
Valerie, a linch-pin of Surrey’s Alan Greenwood & Sons Funeral Directors, collapsed suddenly while at work, and died later in St George's Hospital Tooting. She was 64.

Jan 17

The Resurrection shuffle

A landmark legal case has put body preservation process Cryonics in the spotlight. But what is it, will it work and is it the future…?

Dignity launches nationwide direct cremation service

Dignity plc is launching a nationwide direct cremation service at its 44 crematoria.

Called Simplicity Cremations, the service will be a simple, low-cost unattended cremation – the type of low-key service chosen by David Bowie for his funeral early last year – and will be priced at £1,495.

Hymns fall from favour with over 50s

New research by financial services company SunLife has found that 82% of people over 50 don’t want a hymn at their funeral.

The same survey also found that Always look on the bright side of life by Monty Python is the song most would choose.

Joanne makes awards final

Joanne Hutsby, a partner in Gillotts Funeral Directors, Nottingham, was named as a finalist in an award scheme aimed at celebrating women in business.

Joanne made a shortlist of three in the Female Executive of the Year category of the Women in Business awards run by her local newspaper, the Nottingham Post.

December 2016

Coffins create community

A coffin-decorating club in New Zealand has done more for its members than just helping them to save money on their final farewells...

Funeral debt nears £150m

Funeral debt in the UK has risen to £147m, according to a new report, as people borrow from friends and family or the bank to fund the last wishes of loved ones.

Free photography session for independents

Funeralbooker is offering independent funeral directors a free professional photography session to boost their marketing appeal.

Jo makes business awards shortlist

Jo Loveridge of Albany Funerals, Maidstone made the 22-strong list of finalists in the 14th annual NatWest Everywoman Awards, which celebrate female business owners.

November 2016

October 2016

Demystifying death

An eclectic line-up of events and activities took place at Sutton House in Hackney East London throughout October, encouraging people to reflect on life, death and the journey between the two. Mary Carmichael investigates …

FPA dealing with hundreds of cases

The Funeral Planning Authority (FPA) says it is dealing with hundreds of cases a year – eight to 10 a week – helping families to trace pre-paid funerals. 

Book offers chance to create personal messages to pass on to loved ones

The loss of close family, together with a friend’s diagnosis, inspired a swimming teacher from Cambridgeshire to come up with the idea for a book that lets people share personal messages and memories with their family and friends, and even future generations.

Ian continues green drive

Ian Hazel is continuing his quest to make his eponymous business as green as possible.

August 2016

Death comes to the Fringe

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival (5-29 August) will be featuring several shows coming under the umbrella of Death on the Fringe.

Co-op first to sign enhanced pledge

Co-op Funeralcare has become the first funeral firm to sign up to an enhanced Fair Funerals pledge to improve the way funeral directors’ prices are displayed online.

Supplier 'improves employees’ lives'

Julian Atkinson, MD of coffin company JC Atkinson, recently visited the Bangladesh home of supplier Oasis Coffins, and has agreed new deals to expand production there.

Family award for Anderson Macguire

Anderson Maguire Funeral Directors has won the health and welfare title in the Family Business United Awards (FBU) 2016.

July 2016

Reaction to funeral directors overwhelmingly positive

Voices of angels

Funeralbooker.com – ‘about more than just price’

Jeremy takes the helm at NAFD

June 2016

Call to visit war graves

Ashes to ashes to art

GFC's accreditation 'helps firm stand out'

Six of the best for Walter C Parson

May 2016

Co-op sees 60% increase in online funeral planning

A snap decision

Now FDs can create own branded service sheets and online memorials

'Unique and privileged position', says SAIF president

Issue 49

April 2016

Credit card and payday loans for funerals

Can costs be cut?

Organisation aims to honour veterans

Golf day raises £15,000 for charity