North East & Yorkshire

Changing the business model


Eric F Box, funeral facility, Dewsbury

Work to create a new funeral facility in Dewsbury has been met with praise.

The project – created for Eric F Box Funeral Directors – comprised the construction of a new function space to provide facilities for families, which can be used both before and after a funeral. The new building is connected to the existing funeral home and was constructed to include a series of partition walls, which divide up the space internally.

Work began on the project in July 2013 and reached completion in December 2013. PARKdesigned was the architectural practice on the project, whilst Walter West Builders was the main contractor.

Speaking to Premier Construction about the project, PARKdesigned Managing Director, Edward Park, said:

“The client came to us due to a change in their business model. Historically, when it comes to funeral care, families have had their own resources in order to accommodate the funeral party; however people are living longer and moving to sheltered accommodation so they no longer have this ability. There is now the requirement for a functional space where the family can meet prior to and straight after the funeral and that is what we have created.”

Eric F Box, funeral facility, Dewsbury

Edward added:

“Eric F Box wanted something which was designed well; was carefully considered and was interesting. People come to us for our design skills and it is what we have built our reputation on. What was interesting about this project was that the brief was quite quirky, whilst remaining sympathetic to the function and the people who will be using this facility. For us it was also very interesting to discover how the business model is changing within this sector. It was a very interesting scheme to work on.”

The new facility for the funeral director was constructed on an unused area of land, situated next to the existing building.

Edward commented:

“The land was a very awkward shape, with a culvert running across it and a beck alongside. Not only did this project create new facilities for the funeral home, but it has also made use of a piece of land that was not used for anything in particular.”

Since completing the project, the feedback from Eric F Box Funeral Directors has been extremely positive.

Eric F Box, funeral facility, Dewsbury

Edward said:

“Our client was very happy about this project. We received a positive letter from them, detailing how well it was received by both the people who have used the facility and those within the local area, including the local council.”

Such was the success of the project the scheme received a highly commended award at this year’s Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Awards.

Edward commented:

“Awards like this are great as it is always good to have a little bit of acknowledgement for the projects that you are involved in. We were nominated for a different scheme at the RICS Awards last year and it is fantastic that people recognise what we do.”

Eric F Box is an established UK independent funeral director, providing a high standard of service to the residents of Dewsbury. The company was set up in 1853 by Edwin Box, and over the past 161 years has developed into a market leading company, which still retains and maintains its mission statement: ‘To demonstrate a high degree of professionalism at a very difficult and personal time in a family’s life. As a long established and leading family Funeral Service, it is our responsibility to the local community to provide a very high standard of service, product, safety and fair business practices.’

Eric F Box, funeral facility, Dewsbury

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