Carrying a coffin in a VW camper van – funeral director A H Freemantle on how traditions are changing
It is known that, in many cases, having a traditional service as part of a cremation or a burial can help bereaved people come to terms with and understand their grief. But does the service need to follow the rules built by tradition?
Times and traditions are changing and A H Freemantle is at the forefront of these changes, developing new ways and themes for funerals to better represent someone’s life.
With this more flexible approach we have arranged funerals at a golf club, in a barn and even in someone’s own garden in the last two months alone.
We have used a lorry, two motorcycles and a VW camper van to transport coffins to the funeral venue in the past month - not the same funeral!
And then there are our fantastic women funeral directors and funeral arrangers. In what is a male-dominated industry, A H Freemantle Funeral Directors employs, on a full-time basis, seven women and four men.
Of those women four are funeral directors and one is a company director. It’s unusual to find a funeral company with several women maintaining the smooth day-to-day running of a business.
But in our experience, whenever positions have been advertised, the vast majority of applicants are female. So what’s the problem?
The attention to detail throughout the arrangements is critical and whether it be a floral tribute or the appearance of an order of service, women have an outstanding eye for detail that very often their male counterparts don’t have.
In so many ways this has helped A H Freemantle become better at connecting with its clients emotionally. We don’t just show empathy, but also sympathy through understanding how raw and exposed grief can leave you feeling.
The ‘macho’ image of dealing with grief by sidelining it, or using dark humour to mask it, is becoming an idea of the past.
At all times A H Freemantle works in the clients' best interests and not simply out of tradition, within an industry with a poor track record in client care.
For further information about how we can guide you or those you love through this difficult time, please call 01329 842115 or email [email protected]
By James Keen, managing director of A H Freemantle Funeral Directors