Staff at Ward and Brewin Funeral Home, in Swadlincote, have spoken openly about the importance of working together and how the all-female team helps people who have lost a loved one.
Funeral director Samantha Platt and her colleagues form part of a rising national trend that is seeing more and more women joining the industry and working their way to the top.
Samantha, from Branston, always wanted to work in the funeral industry and has now been working for Central England Co-operative Funeralcare for nearly 10 years. The 32-year-old is a passionate advocate for her work with the Co-op and her colleagues.
She said: "It is brilliant working in an all-female team. We are friends as well as colleagues. We all love working together, something which is important as we spend a lot of time ensuring families are cared for during their time of need.
"One of my biggest mantras is that teamwork is so important. It really matters to us at Ward and Brewin and across the entire funeral industry.
"This is because we only get the one chance to make sure we celebrate the life of a loved one to the highest standard. We are all equally involved in ensuring the quality of our service and we are immensely proud of what we deliver for families.
"For me it is important that we all feel equally responsible for the service we provide for people. I have a brilliant team and we communicate really well between us so that every member of staff is aware of everything that is going on.
"We are all extremely organised which is a must for the day to day running of the funeral home and ensuring we enhance memories and love for our families."
The team is made up of Emma Leadenham, 31, Hayley Johnson, 24, and Emma Lee, 45, who have more than 10 years of experience combined working for the society.
Samantha started her journey for Central England Co-operative Funeralcare by working as an administrator after studying for a nursing diploma at university. Her determination to join the industry saw her apply at the age of 16, but she was turned down as she was too young.
However she continued to pursue her dream and eventually landed a role working at the Central England Co-operative Funeral Home, in Borough Road, Burton.
She eventually progressed to become a funeral director.
Samantha said: "I always wanted to do a job in the funeral industry as I wanted to be able to help people at the most difficult time in their life. The whole team takes a lot of care in helping people through the loss of a loved one and being able to support them.
"I am so proud that when families come to Ward and Brewin they are dealing with a home that has been established for over 35 years, is staffed by a helpful, experienced and friendly team and offers a welcoming and calming environment.
"We love being in the heart of Swadlincote and being part of the community. People in South Derbyshire are lovely and we regularly get families coming back to see us. We pride ourselves on always being there for our families."
The funeral home recently welcomed South Derbyshire MP Heather Wheeler to help mark a £76,000 revamp with a special dedication ceremony.
Mrs Wheeler said: "Dealing with losing a loved one is one of the hardest things a family ever have to do. I am really pleased that Ward and Brewin, with Central England Co-operative, have invested so much in this newly refurbished and rededicated home in Swadlincote.
"The kindness and professionalism of the staff make this whole sad process so much more bearable and I congratulate them all on looking after the people of South Derbyshire so well."
Central England Co-operative Funeralcare Ward and Brewin offers a 24-hour service, seven days a week. In addition to arranging funerals, Samantha and her team are also able to offer advice on floral tributes, monumental masonry, funeral stationery, pre-paid funeral plans and probate advice. The team can be contacted on 01283 215969.