Opening Beccles, launchin the Shoebox appeal and our commitment to become an Investor in People

The opening of our Beccles Funeral Home must have had something to do with all the stars being lined up at the right time.  We had previously tried to buy the premises at auction but had walked away because we thought that with the amount of renovation work that would be required, they would be out of our price range.  Some weeks later, we were approached by David who had purchased the premises, saying that he thought they would make a good funeral home and would we like to rent them from him, but again we thought we wouldn’t be able to afford the premises, and the plans got thrown away.  Some months passed and David contacted us again, and at the same time, Rivetts who had operated in the town of Beccles for many years closed down.  We decided to give it a go and the landlord David allowed the premises to be renovated in such a way that we were able to incorporate our own training room which is also used for community meetings and to hold bereavement support groups.   It was also at this time that Lucy Coote joined the Rosedale team to head up the Beccles office. This year saw us launch our shoebox appeal.  Back in the early days we tried to put together one box a week with a goal of 50 boxes a year.  Each box had a little hat, knitted by Anne.  We became a drop off point for the communities that we are based in, and over the years we have developed an army of knitters and host annual wrapping parties, facilitating the delivery of around 1,000 boxes per annum.  The knitting volunteers are particularly poignant, as many of them are elderly widows who are delighted to be able to contribute to such a positive and meaningful project. We committed to become an Investor in People (IIP) organisation, proudly investing in our amazing staff, without whom there would be no Rosedale.  We are proud to invest so much into our training programme, but the IIP award means that we involve and value all the staff across the whole organisation, celebrating their achievements and encouraging them to reach their full potential. We expanded our team to include Christian Fairbrother who was completely new to the funeral profession, but demonstrated all the right qualities of kindness, professionalism and attention to detail that we look for in our staff.  Christian’s training, (as for all our staff) included a Dementia Awareness workshop, a Funeral Director awareness evening at Nelson’s Journey, a loss of a baby awareness day with Time Norfolk and an evening at Greenacres Woodland Burial Park. Every two years there is a Funeral Exhibition and we always send some staff to look for new ideas that we can adopt at Rosedale.  This year we discovered a beautiful book called When We Remember.  It’s an invaluable resource for putting our mourning into meaningful context and offers inspiration and integrity to help plan a meaningful funeral.  We immediately placed an order and have offered this as a free resources to bereaved families ever since, and we know it has made a real difference to families when planning a funeral.