Disreputable Funeral Directors in the Spotlight: A Growing Concern

The funeral industry has recently faced numerous scandals, shaking public trust and highlighting the need for stricter oversight. One of the most significant cases involved Legacy Independent Funeral Directors in Hull, which came under police investigation in March 2024. This incident, along with others, underscores the importance of choosing a reputable funeral director.

Legacy Independent Funeral Directors Scandal

On March 11, 2024, Legacy Independent Funeral Directors in Hull made headlines when several arrests were made following a police investigation into the business. While the specific allegations remain undisclosed, the involvement of law enforcement suggests severe breaches of trust and potential illegal activities. This scandal has left many families distressed, questioning the integrity of the funeral services they once trusted.

The Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors (SAIF) responded quickly, advising bereaved families to ensure their chosen funeral director is a SAIF member. SAIF members must adhere to a strict code of practice, including the care of the deceased, return of ashes, and transparent invoicing. Regular inspections and a complaints scheme provide additional reassurance. Notably, Legacy Independent Funeral Directors was never a member of SAIF.

R&H Barker Funeral Directors Investigation

Another troubling case emerged in April 2024 involving R&H Barker Funeral Directors in Oxfordshire. Thames Valley Police began investigating the business for potential fraud and one count of preventing a lawful and decent burial. Police searches at the company’s premises in Wantage and Didcot found no evidence of widespread criminal activity, though concerns were raised among families using their services. The police emphasized that the issue seemed isolated to a single individual.

R&H Barker Funeral Directors is also not a member of SAIF.

Ensuring Trust in Funeral Services

To avoid falling victim to disreputable funeral directors, families should:

  • Verify Membership: Ensure the funeral director is a member of a recognized trade association like SAIF.
  • Check Credentials: Look for the membership certificate and window sticker at the funeral director’s premises.
  • Understand the Code of Practice: Familiarize yourself with the code of practice that the funeral director adheres to.
  • Use the Complaints Scheme: Be aware of the complaints scheme available through the association in case of any grievances.

Our Commitment to Excellence and Transparency

As proud members of SAIF, we recently underwent a thorough inspection and anticipate a glowing review of our services, reaffirming our status as local and independent reputable funeral directors. This is supported by numerous positive Google reviews from our clients, reflecting our commitment to providing compassionate and professional funeral services.

We pride ourselves on being a transparent company with an open-door policy. Our founder, Philip, has a distinguished career in law enforcement, including significant roles in the Police and Trading Standards. His extensive background testifies to his integrity and professional approach, ensuring the highest standards of service for our clients.

Conclusion: Ensuring You Choose a Reputable Funeral Director

The recent scandals involving funeral directors highlight the critical need for oversight and accountability within the industry. By choosing funeral directors who are members of reputable associations like SAIF, families can ensure their loved ones are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve. Public trust in the funeral industry must be rebuilt through transparency, regulation, and adherence to high standards.


Feel free to contact us at Sussex Funeral Services to ask us any question or discuss any concerns or worries that you might have.  As local and independent brighton funeral directors we are keen to ensure that whoever you choose to use as your chosen funeral director, that you are making a a safe and sound choice.