President’s September Post

September 9, 2013   //   No Comments

The last month has been very quiet both professionally (the quietest month of 2013, so far) and on the SAIF front, we (SAIF) instigated a novel Regional Meeting at the Aegas Rose Bowl (The Hampshire Cricket Ground) in Southampton, whilst Hampshire were playing Glamorgan. Unfortunately however, the turnout was, to say the least, disappointing. We thought that a novel approach to networking might encourage an enthusiastic uptake, particularly as there are so many independent funeral directors in the area, but it was not to be.

Our next regional meeting in Essex on Wednesday 11th September is a different story, as the early indications give a bumper attendance, were we shall have HM Coroner’s Service Manager to address us and, no doubt, answer many questions on Coronial reform. I visited out local Coroner’s Office this morning to be shown the sumptuous new suite that has been developed, no expense spared there, with provision having been made for the new Medical Examiner, who I was informed, will have staff arraigned in all the local hospitals, so it looks like we will have another tier of bureaucracy to deal with. Incidentally, the Coroner’s Officer was apparently unaware of the profession’s stance with relation to the proposed certification fee!

The week following Essex sees our meeting in Devon at Tiverton on 18th September, and we look forward to the usual large West Country gathering.

It is around September time that we have to think of the finances for the forthcoming year and, accordingly, a Special General Meeting of the Society has been called for Wednesday 11th September at the Park Inn, Harlow at 2:30pm when the main item on the agenda will be to approve the subscription increases for 2014. The proposition from the Executive is a below inflation increase of approximately 2.5% which we hope will be acceptable to the membership.

Northern Ireland is very much part of the United Kingdom and members there enjoy all the benefits available to those on the mainland including the recently introduced ‘SAIFStone’, the SAIF Helpline, Interflora and of course SAIFCharter to name but a few. We are hoping to hold a meeting in late November in the Province if sufficient members or potential members, would attend, but history, particular in 2012, when, in spite of promises, the number of attendees could be counted on the fingers of one hand, does not appear to offer great encouragement. There is no area we would wish to feel disenfranchised so any Funeral Director in Northern Ireland please ring SAIF Business Centre (0845 230 6777) and register your support.

Bookings are starting to come in already for the AGM in March 2014 (14th – 16th) in Southport at the Ramada Hotel and adjoining Conference Centre where you will be assured of a warm northerly welcome. The full programme is currently being finalised and full details will appear shortly.

Lastly, on a personal note, may I thank all of you who were kind enough to express your condolences following our family’s recent bereavement. Your thoughts and concern for us as a family were greatly appreciated, particularly as probably none of you actually knew Sonia.


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