Colum O’Shea, Funeral Director at Nottinghamshire’s largest independent family funeral directors, A.W. Lymn The Family Funeral Service, is now one of the youngest examiners for The National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD).
The NAFD is the largest representative organisation for the UK funeral profession, providing support and guidance to funeral firms and the bereaved families that are in its care.
Colum decided to apply for the volunteer examiner role to celebrate his 10-year milestone with A.W. Lymn. After successfully making it through the application process, at 30 years old, Colum is now one of the youngest examiners on the board.
As part of his responsibilities, Colum will attend NAFD meetings and assist in the construction of examination papers and marking thereof for students sitting exams for the new funeral directing diploma this year.
He said: “I am incredibly proud to take on this new challenge and hopefully help other young professionals in the funeral industry. It’s an honour to be a part of a team that is rich in experience and diversity to ensure the highest standards are delivered throughout the examination process.”
At just 15 years old, Colum’s passion for the funeral industry was ignited when he joined A.W. Lymn on a work experience placement. Four years later, Colum was working full-time for A.W. Lymn on its trainee programme, a four-year residential course that helps kick-start a career in the funeral industry.
As part of the programme, trainees work in each department of the business and gain the following qualifications: Membership of Institute of Advanced Motorists, stone masonry memorial fixer’s licence, Diploma FAA (funeral arranging and administration) and NAFD DipFD (funeral directing) Membership of the British Institute of Embalmers, Emergency First Aid at Work.
Colum said he is already onto his next educational venture, training for his Level 3 Award in Assessing Vocationally Related Achievement.
“It is an incredible opportunity to have the NAFD invest in me as an examiner and put me onto this training course. I am proud to represent A.W. Lymn and work amongst such experienced professionals”.
Jackie Lymn Rose, Company Director at A.W. Lymn, is also part of the NAFD examiner board after first joining in 1996. She said: “We are very proud of Colum and all his achievements since he first joined our family business. He is a real asset to the team and a well-respected funeral director within the local community. His work is extremely valued, and we’re all excited to see what he will do next in his promising career.”
The fifth-generation family business has been helping the bereaved for over 110 years, with quality of service and value for money at the heart of its ethos. A.W. Lymn now operates 27 funeral homes throughout Nottinghamshire and South Derbyshire.