Good Funeral Awards 2014 – the WINNERS

Charles 23 Comments


Funeral Director of the Year

Sarah Clarke of Arka Original Funerals

Most Promising New Funeral Director of the Year  – sponsored by the Church of England

Sarah Stuart and Lel Wallace of Wallace Stewart

Green Funeral Director of the Year sponsored by GreenAcres

Tracy O’Leary, Woodland Wishes

Association of Green Funeral Directors Green Funeral Director of the Year

Gordon and Alison Tulley, Respect Woodland Green Burial Parks

Funeral Arranger of the Year

Angela Bailey of Harrison Funeral Home

Celebrant of the Year

Dee Ryding

Embalmer of the Year

Bob Dyer of A Dyer & Sons and Midland Embalming Service

Gravedigger of the Year

Jonny Laxley

Crematorium Attendant or Manager of the Year

Peter Rodwel, Seven Hills

Eternal Slumber Coffin Supplier of the Year

Roger Fowle

Best Alternative Hearse

Claire Brooks, Volkswagen Funerals

Cemetery of the Year

Clandon Wood

Blossom d’Amour Award for Funeral Floristry

Cassandra Thompson of Stems, New Covent Garden

Most Significant Contribution to the Understanding of Death

Jon Underwood, Death Café

Best Internet Bereavement Resource


Lifetime Achievement Award

Chris Parker



  1. Charles

    An amazing weekend. Well done all.

    This conference and awards ceremony is a highlight of my year. Great group of folks all so willing to share. Truly like a big huggable family.

    We’ll be reflecting on it in our September newsletter. (Due out today/tomorrow if the train wifi doesn’t fail me…)

  2. Charles

    Thanks so much for my award (Most Significant Contribution to the Understanding of Death) which is a source of massive happiness and pride to me. I think it is great to have an award of this type and especially cool to have won when the other nominees (Barbara Chalmers from Final Fling and Chantal Lockey) are so amazing.

  3. Charles

    Congratulations to everyone – the whole weekend was amazing – informative, exciting and buzzing with great people, new ideas and time catching up with old friends. Many thanks Charles and Brian for sparking such a marvellous event.

  4. Charles

    What a fabulous weekend! As well as the socialising, the awards dinner and the wonderful speakers, I really enjoyed the exhibition. Mr C – could we please have more information on those gorgeous Viking ships? I’d like my husband to have one. In the fullness of time. Of course.

  5. Charles

    Dear Kitty

    Those splendid Viking ash-ships are made by the lovely Cath Pratley at Sturminster Newton in Dorset. Aren’t they marvellous? If there’d been a best-in-show competition, I think they would have won hands down (whatever that means). If you attended a talk or death cafe in one of the yurts, Cath makes them as well. You can see her website here –

    You can certainly buy one now in advance of your husband ‘falling asleep’. Be sure to store it in a dry place indoors. Perhaps you could use it as a fruit basket? If it gets damp it may start to sprout and you wouldn’t want to have to uproot it in order that your husband’s cremated remains might repose therein before being fired and sunk.

      1. Charles

        What a delightful memento mori, Kitty! I think he will be delighted. To make it even more ‘real’ for him you could fill it with cat litter — as much as would fill an old-fashioned sweet jar.

        I hope he will pronounce it his best birthday present ever.

  6. Charles

    Thanks so much for the award of Best Cemetery of the Year for Clandon Wood. The whole team is delighted and it is the icing on the cake for what has been an extraordinary year, finalists in the Toast of Surrey Business Awards, voted Best Natural Burial ground in the UK, a Green Flag award and now this. Amazing! Thank you so much to you Charles and all at the Good Funeral Awards for your hard work and efforts in putting on this event. Also a very well done to all the other finalists.

  7. Charles

    For my first year at these awards and the weekend event it was an absolute pleasure and honour to meet so many friendly, talented and innovative people in funeral services. Thank you for a memorable experience. Sorry if I have missed it but who won the cake competition?

  8. Charles

    What a wonderful weekend, with wonderful people. I still cant believe Woodland Wishes won our category ! Well done to all the good funeral professionals including those who didn’t get nominated as I am sure there are lots in the UK.
    Do we really have to wait til next year to meet up again, wouldn’t it be nice to see everyone together sooner….. Tracy x

  9. Charles

    Dear Charles and everyone at the GFG – Thank you so much for my award of Best Funeral Director! I was so thrilled to have won this. The time we spent at Bournville was a real shot in the arm, lovely people and wonderful conversation. Now back to work! Best wishes to everyone there and especially our customers who voted for me and Arka Original Funerals. Sarah xxx

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