Recommended Funeral Directors
Address: c/o 155 Guilford Road, West End, Surrey GU24 9LS
Amanda Pink. Or occasionally her husband Adrian. Amanda has taken over Evelyn’s Funerals after the founder, Evelyn Temple, decided to take a backseat and concentrate on celebrancy. Evelyn had worked alongside Amanda and Adrian from Town and Country Funerals Ltd for some time, utilising their mortuary space when needed, so handing over the reins to Amanda was a natural fit.
Formerly in the catering trade and subsequently spending time working for Surrey Police, Amanda met her future husband, the highly experienced funeral director Adrian Pink, when she joined a large corporate funeral director in their finance department. He was working there as regional manager, and when he decided to leave corporate life behind, she soon followed. Together they set up Adrian’s successful independent business, before the opportunity arose for Amanda to run her own company at Evelyn’s Funerals.
“It’s a perfect, bespoke little business offering a bespoke personal service at an affordable cost for most families,” says Amanda, “I am delighted that Evelyn feels I am the right person to take over from her, as Evelyn’s Funerals is exactly how I think a funeral business should be. We do things in a simple, straightforward way with lower overheads, which means we can offer you a lower cost funeral service.”
Amanda does everything (helped by Adrian when needed), from answering the phone 24 hours a day seven days a week, to collecting the body of the person who has died herself and caring for them until the funeral date. It will always be either Amanda or Adrian that speaks to you, and she will stay in close contact as the days go by. She will always call to let families know that their relative has been brought into her care, and clients know they can ring Amanda personally whenever they want, about anything. It’s this personal service that defines the business and has been part of the trademark of Evelyn’s Funerals since it began three years ago.
Amanda has a background in bookkeeping and a very practical outlook on life. “I can’t see myself ever doing anything else,” she says. “I love this job. Every day is different, every family is important, every funeral I get nervous – but if I don’t get that butterfly in my tummy I’ll know there’s something wrong. I don’t ever want to get complacent, it’s too important to each family that everything is perfect.”
The business is now run from Amanda and Adrian’s home in West End, Surrey, and Amanda visits clients in their own homes to discuss the funeral arrangements. She goes to collect the body of the person who has died herself with assistance from her husband or one of their part time assistants. Between the date of collection and the day of the funeral, people are kept in refrigerated conditions in the converted barn shared by the two companies, where their mortuary and coffin storage is also housed. If families want to spend time with the person who has died this can be arranged at either a local friendly funeral director’s chapel of rest, or in the Cemetery Chapel at Brookwood Cemetery for an additional fee. “We don’t include this fee in our normal service charge because not everyone wants it. We don’t believe in averaging out the costs so that some families subsidise others, each of our clients pays for exactly what they want from us and nothing more.”
Costs are kept low by the lack of overheads in the business and by requiring full payment in advance from each client. This means that the company carries no bad debt, and enables them to continue offering a very personal service at a very modest rate. Assistance with home organised funerals, direct cremations and no fuss simple cremations are the hallmark of the service Evelyn’s Funerals offers, although any kind of funeral can be arranged if the client prefers.
With the back up of Adrian’s knowledge and experience from his almost 30 years in funerals, Amanda has gained a huge amount of confidence and knowledge in recent years, which equips her well to grow the already successful business that covers Berkshire, Surrey and the Hampshire borders. They use a silver MPV vehicle as standard, but can hire in any type of vehicles you like if you want. On the day of the funeral Amanda will be dressed according to the family’s wishes – either in smart casual clothes, a smart navy or black suit or formally in full FD regalia.
“I can’t see myself ever doing anything else,” she says. “I love this job. Every day is different, every family is important, every funeral I get nervous – but if I don’t get that butterfly in my tummy I’ll know there’s something wrong. I don’t ever want to get complacent, it’s too important to each family that everything is perfect.”
Currently studying for her BIFD Diploma in Funeral Directing, Amanda managed to complete the previous Certificate in Funeral Service while working full time with Adrian developing his business - and also juggling babysitting duties for her grandchildren. She thinks good, positive training and qualification is reassuring for both the public and for herself, “It will give me and my families confidence”. When not involved with funerals, Amanda is an avid reader, and enjoys clay pigeon shooting, something her husband has introduced her to.
Straightforward, simple funerals with no fuss are Evelyn’s Funerals’ specialty, but if you want a traditional, full works funeral with Amanda in a smart black hat and suit paging a gleaming hearse, that’s what you’ll get. She believes that funerals are changing as people become more involved with planning the service that is right for them, and that unlike high street FDs, Evelyn’s is flexible enough to be able to offer a totally bespoke funeral for the more demanding modern client. They don’t offer packages; they listen carefully to clients and work with them to achieve exactly the type of funeral they require. Personal service is paramount and value for money comes a close second.
Listening to clients and working with them to get the best possible funeral for them. And a personal continuity of care.
Amanda will be happy to advise you without any obligation. Straightforward, uncomplicated and helpful, she is totally dedicated to each family she helps. Not many people would be willing to turn their dining room into a place where a family could spend time with their relative who had died – Amanda did this without turning a hair when circumstances made it difficult to arrange elsewhere
- Prices here. Direct cremation £1550 all-in.
- Your first call will be answered Amanda. Occasionally by Adrian
- Home visits – Yes, this is standard
- Family participation – Absolutely yes – this is positively encouraged. As much participation as you want.
- Same sex person to wash and dress? Yes, no problem, either Amanda or Adrian will do this.
- Embalming – They have adequate refrigeration, so don’t think embalming is necessary.
- Ethnic specialism - Experienced in helping all faiths and ethnic groups
- Home arranged funerals – Yes, happy to help families looking after a dead person themselves with advice or assistance as required. They often help families wishing to do most things themselves and encourage all families to participate in whatever aspect they feel able to.
- Local celebrants – They have over 25 celebrants who they rate, and will try and suggest a few who are a good fit for families to speak to.
- Website – Nice website, with a very good price estimator so you can have an at a glance total cost of the funeral director fees. We’d like to see Amanda featured on it but she’s only been in charge for a few weeks so this will hopefully come soon.
- Client support – Totally supportive. You deal with Amanda throughout, she will keep you up to date and informed and be there whenever you need her to be.
- Money matters – Extremely good value. Prices are online and clearly outlined. Full payment is required in advance of the funeral
- Parking – As Amanda comes to your home to make funeral arrangements this isn’t normally an issue. Should you prefer to go to her house then parking is available in their drive.
Evelyn’s Funerals began because Evelyn Temple started out creating personalised funeral ceremonies that put the beliefs, ideas and wishes of the person who had died (or their closest friends and family) at the heart of everything. Over time, Evelyn found people were asking for help with more than just the ceremony and just wanted a really straightforward and simple funeral without too much fuss. She grew her funeral business from these modest beginnings to the success it is today, and in Amanda’s capable hands we think it will continue to go from strength to strength. Great value and great service for anyone looking for a modern, unfussy funeral director.