Every death is a sad occasion, but not every funeral needs to be a sombre event. Our current funeral traditions stem from the later part of the 19th. Century and were built upon the attitudes of the Victorians following the death of Prince Albert.It became customary to have a lavish (expensive) funeral with all mourners attired in black. Sometimes elaborate rituals were followed in the home, including stopping all the clocks at the time of death. Mirrors were either draped or turned to the wall and curtains were drawn.
Such rigid practices could not last, and by the turn of the 20th Century habits of mourning began to change. A key factor was the acceptance of Cremation as an alternative to burial, whilst the sheer number of deaths in the First World War led to a considerable relaxation in funeral behaviour.
Recent years have seen a shift in emphasis from the mourning of a loved one, to the celebration of his or her life. This is reflected in the attire of the mourners, the nature of the funeral service, especially the music now played at funerals, and even the type of coffin chosen for the deceased.
Whilst “Hawaiian shirt” funerals are still a minority, we regularly provide a themed colour to funerals. This may reflect a particular charity supported by the deceased e.g. breast cancer) or even the colours of their favourite football team! Colourful coffins are often a fitting tribute to the life of an individual whilst their construction from natural materials is more in tune with today’s attitudes towards the environment.
We are able to call upon the services of a number of officiates who will listen to your requests and provide the type of service that truly reflects the attitude and character of the deceased. Horse drawn carriages, motor cycles, vintage vehicles, even a pink hearse. All are available to make the funeral of your loved one a special and memorable occasion. Please speak to any of our staff for further information.
Following his recent medical MOT, our managing director Nicky Uden has decided to change the habits of a lifetime and embark upon a new fitness regime. Those of you up early enough may be fortunate to see him pounding the streets of South London in an effort to regain his lost youth. He is desperately in need of moral support, so please call Nicky at our head office on 020 8850 2868, to wish him well on this epic adventure.
Good luck dad!
We congratulate George Collett, who has managed our Biggin Hill Branch for the past 5 years, on his retirement. As many of you know, George is an ordained minister attached to The Holy Trinity Church in Bromley Common and will continue to assist families who require a Church of England minister to speak at a funeral service. Together with Graham Horak, our civil celebrant, we are able to provide trained, compassionate officiates who will deliver the sort of service you want in celebration of the life of your loved one.
Our Biggin Hill branch is now in the care of Nigel Jones who will continue to provide the same compassionate help and service to bereaved families that is synonymous with our Company.
It’s not just the men within our family who help and support others. My wife Lucy is currently in strict training for the London to Paris Cycle ride which will take place in 18th – 22nd September when she will be raising money for The Alzheimers Society. If you wish to support her please go to http://www.justgiving.com/lucymaddinuden and watch this space for updates on her progress.
Naturally at this time of year our thoughts turn to all things associated with Spring. Nicky has been preparing his allotment and we look forward to a fine crop of onions and beans this year.
On behalf of all the Uden family we wish you all a happy and peaceful Easter.
We start the year on a sombre note following the death of our senior board member and patriarch of the Company, Mr Philip Uden. As a family we all mourn his loss, yet we rejoice that he is now with his maker and at rest.
Our senior colleague, David Uden, now takes on the mantle of “Father of the Firm” and we are pleased to welcome Michael Uden, Jason Uden and Matthew Uden onto our Board of Directors where they join our current management team, David and Andrew Uden, together with our Managing Director, Nicholas Uden.
Despite the proliferation of new businesses established as funeral directors in this area, together with an overall decline in the death rate throughout the Country; W. Uden & Sons continue to increase our service to the local community. We have achieved this in the face of stiff competition and a challenging economic climate, whilst continuing to provide the highest quality of service that is the envy of all our competitors.
You and your loved ones are assured of our personal attention throughout all the funeral arrangements. We believe our costs are competitive and wholly consistent with the level of service and attention we provide. Please speak to any of our managers for a complete breakdown of funeral expenses, together with an explanation of the disbursements that apply to every funeral.
If you haven’t already done so, may I invite you to look at some of the unsolicited testimonials submitted in respect of our work. It is gratifying to receive such praise and we appreciate that our clients have taken the time to acknowledge our commitment to our chosen profession.
On a lighter note, Nicky is now preparing his allotment for the spring sowing, and we all look forward to the abundance of fresh vegetables he distributes to us all. If anyone would live to share the fruits of his labours, please call him at the Eltham Office on 020 8850 2868. I know he will be pleased to hear from you.
Funeral of the late great Freddie Mills world light boxing champion 1948-1950 at St. Giles Church Camberwell, London, Friday 30 July 1965. Many of the dignitaries present was Jack Solomons , boxing promoter, head of BBC TV, Sylvia Peters, Henry Cooper, Jim Wick(Henry Cooper’s manager), Terry Downs (middleweight boxer), Dick Richardson (heavyweight boxer), John Williams (boxer), Harry Levine (boxing promoter), Ron Barton (boxer), Teddy Wharton (boxer referee), Len Harvey (former lightweight boxing champion), Frankie Vaughan (singer and dancer), Norman Wisdom (actor and comedian), Tommy Trinder (actor and comedian), Alfred Marks (actor and comedian), Ann Shelton (singer), Nat Seller (Freddie’s Trainer and cornerman), Harry Vines (boxer), Andy Holme (actor from Singapore), Bruce Forsyth (entertainer and comedian), Len Nipper Read (detective), Bob Monkhouse & Dennis Goodwin (comedians and script writers), Sid James (actor) Ted Boardribb (Freddie’s former manager and Father-in-law), Harry Gibbs (referee), and various sports writers.
It’s not just bereaved families that we help throughout the year. We also provide support and assistance to local churches and communities. We are pleased to offer free transport to Nursing Home staff who would like to attend the funeral of any of their patients who died in their charge. In association with a number of residential homes we also offer the opportunity for any resident to record their final wishes. Please contact any of our offices for further details
At this time of year we are especially pleased to help another busy person with their special work. On Saturday 10th. November W. Uden & Sons, in association with N. Cook, (carriage masters), were happy to provide a horse drawn carriage to bring Father Christmas to Bexleyheath.
On Thursday 15th. November when Santa arrived in Eltham the staff of W. Uden and sons joined in the celebrations by decorating our Eltham Branch (and one of our Limousines) with Christmas lights whilst distributing wine, mince pies and good cheer to local people. We were also joined by the Rock Choir who gave an impromptu performance outside our shop.
The following Saturday 17th November, our carriage was again in service conveying Steve McFadden, (star of Eastenders) together with the Mayor and others to the Broadway Shopping Centre to turn on the Christmas lights.
The forecast for LCY by WP Wunderground