The Good Funeral Guide Blog

A camper hearse

Tuesday, 16 October 2012


It was a touching little story and it was all over the papers a week ago: A mechanic appears to have predicted the circumstances surrounding his own death when he died from a heart attack after completing work on converting a VW campervan into a hearse. Mick McDonald, 50, had joked that the job would ‘be the death of him’ but then he became the first person to use it. [Mail]

The owner of the VW campervan, Carl Bell, is now offering his hearse for hire anywhere under the business name of Retro Farewell. His website is still under construction, but you can ring him: 07590908169



8 comments on “A camper hearse

  1. Tuesday 9th July 2013 at 12:46 pm

    I have found Carl to be honest and upfront about his business and ‘relationship’ with Clare (two sides to every story) when I asked his about his Camper Van. It’s practically on my doorstep and when we used him last week the family were over the moon with him, the camper and the price, the families are not interested in behind the scene bickering, only getting the best they can possibly afford. We were quoted over a thousand pound to bring a double decker bus to the NE the family simply couldn’t afford it nor could I justify it. There is room for everyone as geographically its impossible to cover the whole county unless you pass on huge charges to families. And surely the families are the ones that matter not who said what or when

  2. Louise

    Sunday 7th July 2013 at 9:44 pm

    I lost my father on Christmas Day 2012, he had recently purchased a VW Camper but was too ill to use it to its full potential which was truly sad, Carl was there for me as a friend and ensured my dad had the best farewell. Many thanks Carl and good luck to all as I’m sure there is enough work to go round !

  3. jeanette

    Sunday 4th November 2012 at 9:42 am

    Carl gave my brother a fantastic send off thank you Carl from all our family x

  4. Clare

    Wednesday 17th October 2012 at 11:59 pm

    Bright white: Mr Bell, pictured in the camper, said a bright white campervan makes funerals less happy

    Good old Daily Mail! I always thought funerals were way to happy and we needed to make them ‘less happy’ with our vehicles!

  5. Clare

    Wednesday 17th October 2012 at 11:50 pm

    Thanks Rupert x

  6. Rupert Callender

    Wednesday 17th October 2012 at 9:06 am

    I can vouch that having met Clare at the recent awards she is the real deal. As you say Clare, this work has a way of quickly calling your bluff. I’m sure your reputation will be safe whoever else comes on the market.

  7. Tuesday 16th October 2012 at 5:37 pm


    Passing off your business as another that is well established is not he best way to get your reputation started. I have had many calls about this RIP off and most cant believe someone would do it so blatently. He even uses our logo all be it flipped the opposite way around and the hearse is named the same as one of our vehicles.

    On a different note the person who helped to paint ours died 2 weeks later and the mechanic my lovely friend Steve who helped me restore the mechanicals of my ORIGINAL hearse died shortly after too.

    However I didnt use that story for promoting my company.

    Sorry but I am still very unhappy about this. He may copy our brand and our business model but he can not copy the care, time, love, sleepless nights, passion and knowledge that we have for Volkswagen Funerals that makes us professionals.
    Will be interesting to see how he gets on the day somebodies mum calls and says I just lost my 15 year old son please help me.

    This job is not about driving he car!

    • Rosie McGowan

      Tuesday 13th January 2015 at 9:39 pm

      Well said Clare! I contacted you a few weeks ago re a quote for my own funeral. I had gotten a really really good vibe from you site, and just from the short contact we had. You did give me this guy Carls details but, having looked at his site etc, i just knew he wasn’t for me, (am being very PC!) Anyhoo, just wanted to voice my support to VW Funerals and just say i’ve passed your details to my undertaker who should be in touch this week. Your work is amazing and nothing and no one could beat it xxxx

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