The Rosedale Journey

We are a family business and we believe that makes a difference.

Take a look at our timeline below and find out more about the people behind Rosedale and what makes us different to other funeral providers.

The Rosedale Journey

Nelson’s Journey Fundraising, Anonymouse Project and Talks in the Community

This year was the 25th anniversary of child bereavement charity Nelson’s Journey and we pledged to help raise money to celebrate this. Part of this involved a challenge day where Christian and Charmaine pushed themselves out of their comfort zone in the HillTop challenge day where fundraising ideas were also exchanged. On June 3rd, several members of Rosedale took part in a 25-mile coastal walk raising £1670 which exceeded their target of £1500. There was more fundraising with a very successful bingo night in Suffolk raising over £700 for a local charity, Clinks Care Farm. Several members of Rosedale also…Read More

More Fundraising, Litter Picks and Daisy The Pig

Following the years of restrictions, 2022 saw Rosedale re-start their fundraising in the more traditional ways with several Quiz and Bingo Nights which raised many hundred’s of pounds for local good causes. We also took part in the circus themed Diss Carnival, even making a huge elephant to be part of the parade. The bicycle hearse was filled with our memory bears for guessing the number, and colouring books and other games were on offer. Finally, Anne and Simon hosted a successful pool party to raise funds for Ukraine. Despite it being a particularly blustery day, that didn’t stop some…Read More

Launch of our ‘Cooking for One’ book and the opening of our Harleston Branch
Cooking For One Launch

This is the year that saw the easing of Covid restrictions, and some sense of returning to normality. We continued to support The Blossom Charity by participating in their Eye sculpture trail, this year by decorating a tortoise that we named ‘Hope’. We were really proud of our design which Paul Rackham painted, so much so that we bought it at the auction and you can see it in front of Rosedale House in Diss. Perhaps that most significant thing we achieved this year was the launching of the Cooking for One book. This was Simon’s brainchild, and was inspired…Read More

Covid Restrictions and Innovative Fundraising

2020 was a challenging year with the onset of the Covid pandemic and accompanying restrictions. We had to adapt quickly to the changing rules and work in ways to ensure families received the same quality of care and attention. We had to work in mixed teams. We also launched our ‘What Happens At A Funeral’ short film which is a resource that can be used by people who may not know what to expect. This has been very well received and has over 37000 views on YouTube. We took part in the Eye Sculpture trail with the help of…Read More

Our journey continues

We are proud to be supporting Diss Town Council to upgrade the Diss Cemetery roundabout and have worked with garden designer Kate Leith to come up with a planting design to enhance the area for visitors to the cemetery, and Charmaine has designed signs to give information about the planting that also provides information about how to access bereavement support. We celebrated Fair Trade Fortnight in Beccles this year by holding a toilet-twinning party and Fair Trade coffee morning serving Fair Trade banana cake and chocolate brownies and showcasing Fair Trade Funerals. We have invested in very posh coffee machines,…Read More

Another year of awards, Anne recognised as one of Suffolk’s 100 most inspirational women and meeting our bereavement dogs

Our newest recruit Kevin Mobbs passes his Funeral Directing exams, along with Rhys Askham who has been with us since he came for two weeks work experience when he was at Hartismere High School. Rhys completed his apprenticeship with Rosedale and then went off to travel the world gaining some valuable work experience in the funeral profession in New Zealand before being recognised in the National Good Funeral Awards and being promoted to the position of Funeral Director in our Attleborough and Wymondham funeral homes. Our Diss team also expanded again to include Keith a former accountant who is retraining…Read More

Working with Mental Health First Aid England, launching the Smiles & Tears Gift Box and celebrating our 10th anniversary

We wanted to be more aware of the Mental Health of our staff and tried to find a Mental Health First Aid course to attend. There were no courses available locally at that time, so Anne decided to become an instructor for Mental Health First Aid England. Halfway through the training, she discovered that she had unwittingly committed to delivering a minimum of two course per year with 8-16 attendees. She overcame this problem by making places available to other local businesses with subsidised places for community groups and small businesses that wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford the training.…Read More

The Good Funeral Awards, raising money for a well in Uganda and Dream On

Following the sudden death of Simon’s sister Sarah, we came across a crowd funding opportunity to support the launch of a book about explaining death to children called ‘It’s not fair.’ We were able to support the book financially and in return, have her name included in the people it was dedicated to and a photograph of Sarah and her dog Millie incorporated into one of the illustrations. We were joined by Laura Martin who, like Anne, was once Britain’s youngest female Funeral Director and who starred on the channel four television programme Teen Undertaker. Unfortunately, after being with us…Read More

Winning three awards, signing the Quaker Social Action Fair Funeral Pledge and launching our cycle hearse

In the first ever award ceremony hosted by Nelson’s Journey we were delighted and honoured to win a Smiles Award in the category of Most Innovative Support, after we had built and donated a dolls house sized church which they use to explain to children what happens at a funeral service. The church was fully kitted out with a replica hearse and limousine, coffin trestles, lectern and pews and even a range of coffins and flowers. Our commitment to customer service was rewarded yet again when we received another Customer Care Award from Funeral Planning Services and were also highly…Read More

Anne and Pippa Nominated charity fundraisers of the year, Suffolk Adult Learners Awards and a Christmas service of Remembrance

Anne and Pippa Hardie were nominated charity fundraisers of the year in the South Norfolk Community Awards, after Pippa came up with the idea to raise £10,000 for charity to celebrate Rosedale’s 10th anniversary and our 10 for 10 plans were born. The year saw us deliver a bingo night, a community quiz, a golf day and our inaugural Walk of Remembrance, with Anne achieving her challenge of running 10 marathons in 10 weeks. Funds were raised for the Norfolk & Norwich Association for the Blind, Wymondham Dementia Group, Beccles Public Hall, Clinks Care Farm, East Coast Hospice, East Anglian…Read More

Rewarded for our exceptional customer service, our first delivery of memory bears and supporting local Foodbanks

Our exceptional customer service was further rewarded when we received a surprise Customer Care Award, sponsored by Funeral Planning Services. Dee Besley was announced best Funeral Arranger of the year in the National Good Funeral Awards with Paul Rackham just being pipped to the post as Best Grave Digger in the Country. As a shy person, he desperately didn’t want to come first, because he didn’t want to give a speech. As it was, the winner was not in attendance and he was asked to give a speech on behalf of all the nominated grave diggers! He said he was…Read More

National and local award success and recognition as one of the Uk’s best Funeral Directors by the Good Funeral Guide

We were nominated for a Family Business Place Red Ribbon Award and came first in the category of Best Small Family Business. Anita Brightley-Hodges from the Family Business Place said, “This husband and wife team is applauded for its commitment to equal opportunities for all ages, training of staff, community involvement, environmental awareness, support for the well-being of bereaved children and their unfailing commitment to customer service. This year also saw us recognised as one of the Uk’s best Funeral Directors when we were inspected by Charles Cowling from the Good Funeral Guide. The accreditation process involved spending time behind…Read More

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…Read More

Launched our Bereavement Support Group in Wymondham, our memory boxes and Anne begins to deliver training nationally

Rosedale joined the Salvation Army and BBC local radio to support the Toys and Tins appeal in the run up to Christmas, resulting in over 4,500 gifts being personally delivered to grateful families.   After receiving so many requests from adults for memory boxes, we started to make these available for care home residents to help reawaken memories of special people, experiences and achievements.  We have supplied thousands of these complimentary memory boxes over the years to bereaved children and dementia patients alike.   We launched our Bereavement Support Group in Wymondham run by Funeral Administrator Marion Baynton and her…Read More

Joining Dying Matters, the Association of Green Funeral Directors and making memories

In 2009 we were one of the first Funeral Directors in the UK to join the Dying Matters coalition, a group of individual and organisational members across England and Wales, which aims to help people talk more openly about dying, death and bereavement, and to make plans for the end of life.  We have marked Dying Awareness week in May ever since by hosting open days, roadshows, photographic exhibitions, film nights and other events which help to break down the mystery and taboos around death. We also became a founding member of the Association of Green Funeral Directors, set up…Read More

Opening Halesworth, supporting local sport and the environment

After years of searching for suitable premises in Halesworth, we finally opened the doors of Arcadia House in Halesworth, which former colleague Dee Besley headed up.  The premises are ideally situated in the town centre with car parking close by and with an upstairs room which we open up to community organisations for a meeting place. Sporting events have always featured in our sponsorship programmes, including Gymnast Bethany Harmer, football teams, bowls clubs and more recently the Attleborough Boxing Club which we have supported for many years. We extended our environmentally friendly range of coffins to include Fair Trade coffins…Read More

Opening Wymondham, national recognition and training with Nelson’s Journey

When the greengrocers in town closed down, we had the opportunity to buy the premises and open a branch of Rosedale in Wymondham, but for many months and even years afterwards, folk would seek us out on Middleton Street, looking to buy a cabbage or a bunch of bananas!  The branch was headed up by Marion Baynton who went on to launch our first Bereavement Support Group and was a valued member of the team until she retired in 2017.  The stained-glass window in the Chapel of rest depicts a sailing boat on the horizon from the reading that she…Read More

Opening Attleborough, Anne became a registered tutor with the British Institute of Funeral Directors and helping bereaved children

We opened our third funeral home in the town of Attleborough in the summer of 2006.  It was a natural progression for us as we already served the outlying villages such as Quidenham, East Harling, Banham and the Buckenhams, and we quickly established our reputation in the town. Anne became a registered tutor with the British Institute of Funeral Directors, making her one of the most highly qualified Funeral Directors in the country, and ensuring that all Rosedale staff had access to a qualified tutor to support them through their Diploma qualifications. We purchased a stock of child bereavement workbook…Read More

Opening Bungay, David Young joins our team and and expectant duck

We were approached by former colleagues Liz Chapman and George Ling who were very unhappy at their old company and asked if we would consider opening a branch of Rosedale in Bungay.  Finding suitable premises was not easy, but we made our home on Upper Olland Street and opened at the end of November, in time to have our first Christmas memorial tree blessed. David Young a retired Major in the Salvation Army joined our team of bearers and began to lead funeral services, bringing his unique ability to help a family plan a funeral that does not follow the…Read More

2004 – The start of our journey

It’s fair to say that Rosedale was started on a shoe string!  Our desks were upcycled from a skip, and we had to borrow furniture from friends and family and take the pictures off our walls at home to hang at Rosedale House.  Peter Beales sponsored the roses in our courtyard garden, the Rose logo was drawn by Paul Rackham and Harold Rackham sourced our first Rover hearse and limousine.  Richard Green and Derrick Leeder were our founding Funeral Directors whilst Simon worked full time as an electrician and Anne worked at Colney Woodland Burial Park as a marketing consultant…Read More