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HULL BUSINESSMAN TO OFFER CUT PRICE FUNERALS

A Hull businessman is promising to dramatically cut the costs of funerals and the time waiting for them to be held after launching a new venture in premises on Hessle Road.

Simon Woolston has leased 171 to 177 Hessle Road through PPH Commercial and has launched Funeral Support Services, which will provide a full funeral service for just £1700.

“The cost of a funeral is normally £4,500, which I think is a rip off. From our £1700 charge we will still make £600 profit, which I’m happy to tell clients about. The only additional costs will be flowers and placing a bereavement notice,” he said.

His premises on Hessle Road will provide four viewing rooms, a mortuary, and a chapel that can provide a funeral service for up to 60 mourners.

He said: “At present you can’t get a service at a crematorium for at least two weeks. People will now be able to use our chapel for the service and we will then take the deceased to the crematorium the following morning. Our services will be 8am to 8pm seven days a week so it will greatly speed things up.

“Our facilities and charges are a first in the UK and it will shake up the funeral industry. It’s disgraceful that funerals are so expensive. Relatives may be going through the distress of seeing someone in palliative care and also having the massive strain of worrying about how they will pay for the funeral.”

Mr Woolston, whose businesses include owning the Vauxhall Tavern pub on Hessle Road, will trade under three funeral directors’ businesses – Kneeshaws, Heavenly Services and Dignatass.

“I deliberately picked the Dignatass name, with a different spelling, to be controversial. People will notice that name and ask what it’s about,” he said.

As well as providing low price, one stop facilities, Mr Woolston intends to shake up other aspects of the funeral industry.

“We want to make it possible for people to prepare the bodies of their relatives themselves if they want to. That’s particularly important to the Muslin community.”

Ben Medhurst, Director of PPH Commercial, said: “This is one of the most unusual change of use that we have ever seen for a building. Simon Woolston has ambitious plans and the premises will give him the capacity to carry them out.”