A funeral with a steam engine theme

Charles Cowling

David Hall Shell


Vintage Lorry Funerals has a number of members in the company’s support team who can provide items to supplement the Floral Tributes or a Theme if their inclusion can enhance a display to exceed a Family’s expectations.

A Garden Contractor has supplied a Victorian Railway Porter’s Cart, a 1950’s Milk Churn and newly sawn Logs. Plumbers, Brick Layers and Joiners provide tools. However the main participant is a man whose Father once owned a Commercial Garage in Steeple Ashton, which closed in the 1960s and has remained untouched, just like when the Mechanics left it on the final day. When David Hall, who owns Vintage Lorry Funerals, believes that some items will be required he is invited to look around an Aladdin’s cave of equipment with the owner having a brainstorming session to select suitable items.

For a funeral in Fleet all David was advised was that the Deceased had been a Fred Dibnah type of guy and the idea of a ‘Steam Engine Theme’ was discussed with the Funeral Arranger. David phoned his Steeple Ashton friend who was able to supply   giant spanners, jacks and vintage oil cans which would enhance the Theme. However, a large square object was required to fill a space on the rear of the display and following a detailed search a Shell Sign was chosen which fitted the flower tray very snugly.

The Family of the Deceased were very pleased with every element of the display, pictures from which were placed in a Memory Box along with other significant items used by the Deceased.

Whilst David Hall, was trundling home over Salisbury Plain he suddenly thought that he should have had Shell’s permission for displaying their Retail Sign. The following morning Shell were contacted and a Senior Manager confirmed that the company would normally have taken a dim view of the unauthorised use of the sign, however, given that it was used in a funeral a retrospective dispensation was granted. 




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Clare Brookes
8 years ago

Ahh David’s great, he puts his heart and soul into his work.
Nice blog

8 years ago

Darn it, the other way round. Truck logo 70s onwards, logo below, 50s!

8 years ago

Good to see some corporate heart. The Shell logo on the truck is the 1950s version, reworked in the 1970s by graphic/industrial design legend Raymond Loewy. His flattened scallop logo remains today. He was already quite old at the time and had behind him iconic designs for Lucky Strike cig packets, Coca Cola cans and Electrolux mixers.