Meet the nominees

Paul Stevenson, Nominee for SAIF Charter

After next month’s AGM weekend there will be two new members taking their place on the SAIFCharter Executive, along with one well-known existing face.

Following last month’s nominations process, two candidates were put forward. Those candidates were Arran Brudenell, the current Secretary of SAIFCharter, whose term was complete and was required to stand for re- election, and John Byrne, who will be new to the Executive. In addition, one seat on the Executive is held on behalf of Scottish SAIF. The Scottish association’s long-serving  delegate Ian Sturrock will stand down in March to be replaced by Paul Stevenson.

Each has supplied a profile outlining the history and experience that has led them to the role.


Paul Stevenson

Paul Stevenson has 30 years’ experience in the funeral profession. Nine years with an Independent funeral director and, in 1994, incorporating and becoming Managing Director of Paul Stevenson Funeral Directors Ltd. Head office in Saltcoats, North Ayrshire, Scotland with a second office up the coast in Largs, furnishing a total of 340 funerals in 2015.

The company has been a member of SAIF for 20 years, SAIFCharter from the beginning and Scottish regional winner of Funeral Planner of the Year 2008 and Scotland South 2013, 2014 and 2015.

In June 2014, Paul was invited and joined SAIF Scotland executive committee. Since then he has joined two SAIFCharter working groups – Legal Services and Policing & Compliance Committee. He is also Second Vice President of SAIF Scotland, becoming Vice President at the next AGM.

John Byrne

As a company director, I’ve worked in our family business for 17 years. J T Byrne Funeral Directors was established in 1989 by my parents, and I joined them in 1999. We are based on the Fylde Coast in Lancashire and conduct 300 funerals per year.

We currently operate two funeral homes, with a third opening in June. We pride ourselves on providing a high level of service at a reasonable cost and believe that being part of SAIF and Golden Charter is the best way to protect our future.

Our company has offered Golden Charter pre-paid funeral plans enthusiastically from day one, a fact reflected by several recent nominations for Funeral Planner of the Year. We do this as we recognise the importance of funeral planning to our business and to the future financial security of the wider independent sector.

My first steps with SAIFCharter were by joining the Policing and Compliance committee 18 months ago, and I thoroughly enjoy the ability to contribute to shaping the future of Golden Charter and being part of the debates that affect each and every one of us as funeral directors. I was recently also co-opted onto the SAIF Executive committee. That has been another new and welcome challenge.

As a member of the SAIFCharter Executive committee I look forward to working to represent the views of independent funeral directors and in particular those working in the north west. I will seeking to ensure that all conclusions reached nationally serve the best interests of the wide variety of firms which make up this successful association. I can be contacted at

Arran Brudenell

Arran has now been working in the profession for 12 years, gaining his Diploma in Funeral Directing in 2006. At the time he was among the youngest qualified funeral directors in the UK, and in 2007 won a National Training Award for what he had achieved in his short time in the profession. Since then Arran has held a wide variety of positions, including the day-to-day running of Anstey & District Funeral Services as Managing Director.

In 2012-13 he was SAIF’s national president, having served on the SAIF Executive since 2008 and on the SAIFCharter Executive since 2010.

More widely still, Arran is also a member of the British Institute of Funeral Directors. In addition to his Diploma in Funeral Directing, he holds a Certificate in Funeral Practice and has an honours degree in business management.

Since his presidency, Arran’s main contributions have come as Chairman of the IFD College, a role he has held since 2013, and, for the past year, as the Secretary to SAIFCharter. Arran currently holds both roles.



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