Why don’t we provide a 24-hour service?

Traditionally, all funeral directors have offered a 24-hour service, every day of the year.

We have broken the mould of funeral directors in many ways – we don’t push unnecessary services such as embalming and expensive vehicles, we don’t upsell coffins, we recognise the benefits of the internet and having all of our prices openly advertised online. We put you in charge of the funeral arrangements, so that together we create a meaningful and emotionally uplifting ceremony, rather than telling you what you can or can’t do.

People don’t die at set times between Monday and Friday, so we need to provide some out-of-hours cover. However, our clients have also told us that there is rarely anything that can’t wait, or that requires an immediate response.

The Working Time Directive 2003 states that an employee is entitled to 11 hours off work in any 24 hour period. Some funeral directors insist that their employees waive this right. We took the decision that our employees’ health is more important than expecting someone to be available 24/7.

We then had a choice between employing two people to work permanent nights, or keeping our prices as low as we reasonably could. If we employed two more people we’d have had to increase our funeral prices by around £360, and we’d have two people sitting around doing nothing for the vast majority of the time. We asked our clients which they’d favour, and every one of them said they’d prefer us not to be on call all the time. Most said they wouldn’t expect us to answer the phone outside office hours.

We’ve never advertised a 24-hour service, because as a small company, with very few employees, we know we’d find it impossible to answer the phone whenever it rings. We also need our sleep, and to be wide awake during the day to cope with the increasing demands on our service.

So we’ve taken the decision to put the answerphone on at 8pm each evening, and to check it and turn it off at 6am the next morning. If you need our services outside these hours, please call us and leave us a message. We’ll return your call shortly after 6am unless you ask us not to, and we’ll be with you as soon as possible after that.

Other funeral directors in St Neots and Huntingdon operate their 24-hour service from call centres, one in Sutton Coldfield and one in the North-East of England. We guarantee you’ll speak to someone local, who knows and understands what you’re talking about.

Because we answer every one of our telephone calls ourselves, and because we become very involved with our clients, we all need some uninterrupted time overnight to call our own.

We feel this is the best way for us to keep offering our unique, personal service, and to ensure that you have the true ‘Kingfisher experience’ throughout the time you require our services.