R Hyde-Chambers: Independent and family-run

THE East Anglian Daily Times talks to Robin Hyde-Chambers about his funeral directors service in Suffolk.

THE East Anglian Daily Times talks to Robin Hyde-Chambers about his funeral directors service in Suffolk.

Q: When did you open your service?

A: My wife Claire and I opened our funeral home at 55 St Helens Street on July 17. The day went exceptionally well with an official opening from our local MP Ben Gummer, whom we thank greatly for his support. We now look forward to serving the community to the best of our ability.

A question everyone asks me is why did you choose to open a funeral home and how did you start in this still quite “Taboo” industry.

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I am a strong believer that for many people like me, hard work and experience can count for more than qualifications. I left school at 16 and went straight to work for HM the Queen at the Royal Mews training carriage horses. A talent I acquired in childhood and still use with our funeral horses today.

From there I went on to work in horsedrawn funerals and then into various funeral homes across South London and Essex.

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I have had the privilege of working alongside some of the very best funeral directors in the country, and for this I am eternally appreciative.

Q: What made you follow this career path?

A: After starting my work specialising in horsedrawn funerals and supplying this service to over 100 funeral homes across the South East I was fascinated with ‘how the other side live’.

Luckily working with so many funeral directors meant I had the chance to work with the very best and learn how things should be done. But on the flip side I have unfortunately worked with some where the lesson I took away was how not to do things.

I think although many people still shy away from openly talking about death, there is still a morbid fascination with death and funerals. It was this fascination that gave me the drive to work in the funeral industry, work hard and learn as much as I could from my colleagues.

This fascination turned into a passion and the funeral business then became my life.

Q: Tell me about the services you offer

A: Myself and my staff can offer you free advice and guidance at your most vunerable time, on all aspects of the funeral service you require. Our aim is to provide you with an environment where you can arrange your loved one’s funeral in a relaxed and comforting surrounding. If for whatever reason you are unable to attend our office, we will be more than happy to visit you in the comfort of your own home, making such a difficult process a little less daunting.

It is our promise to ensure that you have the funeral service you desire – from simple to extravagant and everything in-between. We offer a full range of funeral services, including cremation, burial, woodland burials and eco-friendly funerals.

Personal touches include a jazz band, white dove releases, balloon releases with messages, Scottish pipers and many more which can be added to make a truly memorable day.

Q: What types of transport are available?

A: There’s a wide variety of transport available to our clients. Our modern fleet of specialist-built black hearses and limousines are the funeral service ‘work horses’. These are the traditional form of funeral travel and have been built specifically for this purpose by Coleman Milne Coachbuilders. These fine Mercedes cars are of such quality they have been supplied to Royal families here in Britain and abroad.

Personal touches such as vintage horsedrawn hearses (available in black or white turnout), Motorcycle hearses, vintage lorries, greengrocer’s carts, a pink motor hearse and fleets of both white and silver motor hearses and limousines are all available to our families and offer something truly unique to the final journey of a loved one.

Q: Is there anything different about your business that makes you stand out?

When someone dies it comes as a great shock. Sometimes the death may be expected but nothing prepares you for the emotional trauma of losing someone close. The funeral of a member of your family or a close friend is the most difficult day of your life. Everything you, your family and friends thought about a loved one is expressed on that day.

As your funeral service we are here to help and advise you in whatever way we can. We are dedicated professionals who provide a personal service to you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Q: Death is difficult to deal with, do you offer any counselling or advice?

A: Your grief may last for months or even years – it will never disappear completely but will hopefully get easier with time. It is of paramount importance that all families we care for feel they have received a first class service from us. Those thoughts stay with you long after the funeral has taken place, as will the memory of the loved one you have lost.

We take great pride in being able to offer our families a bereavement befriending service to help support you in what ever way you may need it.

Q: It’s a shock when someone close dies, what should people do first?

A: When a death occurs at home the first contact should be with the family doctor. They will come to the place of death and provide confirmation on paper. Your funeral director will also need to be contacted and will arrange for the deceased to be taken into their care immediately.

If a death occurs in hospital you will need to contact your funeral director, but from then on they will liaise with the hospital for the necessary medical forms and clearance to be received into the funeral director’s care.

Q: Do you offer any ‘green’ funeral options?

A:So-called ‘green’ and ‘eco-friendly’ funerals have become increasingly popular.

We provide a range of ‘green’ alternatives such as cardboard coffins, woodland burials, disappearing Urns and even coffins made from recycled paper.

Q: Tell me about your pre-plan funerals

A: Many people wish to provide for their funeral expenses and pre-paid funeral planning is a sensible, caring and cost-effective way to do so. R Hyde-Chambers Funeral Service is proud to offer their funeral plan in partnership with Golden Leaves pre-planning service, fully inline with the code of practice laid down by the funeral planning authority.

Purchasing a pre-paid funeral plan enables you to pay now, at today’s price, and beat inflation – no matter how far in advance the service might be needed. Our plans are financially secure and can be fully tailored to reflect every individuals requirements.

Contact R-Hyde Chambers on 01473 413105

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