News By Wire

Daughter of Late Paramedic ‘Shocked and Appalled’ Following Collapse of Funeral Plan Provider

The daughter of a Midlands paramedic has told how she was ‘shocked and appalled’ after the collapse of a funeral plan company meant that his financial investment in his funeral amounted to nothing. 

Rachael Lee, daughter of retired paramedic Bob Lee, who sadly passed away in December 2023, is aiming to raise awareness of the situation she now finds herself in, due to Safe Hands falling into administration in March 2022. 

Following her father’s passing, Rachael followed instructions to contact Safe Hands and begin the arrangement process. Upon finding that the company had entered administration, she was presented with two options – to call a suggested funeral director or contact Safe Hands administrators.  

Both options led Rachael to the conclusion that the Safe Hands plan her father had paid into, for himself and his wife, Carol, was now worthless.  

A family friend set up a fundraising page to help Rachael cover the cost of Bob’s funeral, which was a large cost the family thought had been covered.   

At this stage, a representative from West Midlands-based funeral director, Jennifer Ashe & Son, happened to see a Facebook post linking to Bob’s fundraiser, and approached Rachael with an offer to help cover a major chunk of the funeral arrangements. 

Rachael said: “I felt incredibly shocked and appalled after my dealings with the funeral director I was instructed to call, and the automated response I received from the administrators who are dealing with Safe Hands. We were essentially told that dad’s plan had no value to it. I honestly didn’t know where to turn to next – a family friend asked if she could set up a fundraising page, to help cover our funeral costs, which I thanked her for the thoughtfulness to do so. 

“Then, we were contacted by Joe at Jennifer Ashe & Son, and he offered for the company to cover a large amount of the total funeral costs, as they had been touched by our story. We were blown away by the support of Joe and Rachel at Jennifer Ashe. They have been on-hand to help assist with our requests and helped our family through this very difficult time.” 

Rachael’s father, Bob, dedicated four decades to the Staffordshire Ambulance Service and was a beloved figure in the local community known for his selfless service, as he worked in many different roles during his time with the service. 

Joe Evans, Company Secretary and Funeral Director at Jennifer Ashe & Son, said: “We understand the emotional and financial toll that these unexpected circumstances can bring. When we spotted the fundraiser for Bob, we knew we could step in and help alleviate some of the burden that was on Rachael and her family, due to the collapse of Safe Hands.  

“We have assisted many former customers of Safe Hands with funeral arrangements, as many simply did not know where to turn after they landed in administration. As a funeral director, we remain dedicated to providing support and solace to those in need, ensuring that their loved ones receive a dignified farewell.” 

The collapse of Safe Hands in March 2022 has caused the funeral plans of 46,000 customers to be thrown into jeopardy, as the company was not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. A subsequent fraud inquiry launched in October 2023 by the Serious Fraud Office revealed suspected fraud at Safe Hands and its parent company, SHP Capital Holdings Ltd. 

For Rachael, she wants to raise as much awareness as possible, to ensure this doesn’t continue to happen to families across the country. She added: “Almost 50,000 people held funeral plans with Safe Hands. That’s thousands of families that no longer have access to their paid-for funeral plans, and have been left with bills of thousands of pounds, as a result. 

“I would encourage others to check their pre-paid funeral plans as soon as possible, to ensure they are prepared for any eventuality. The team at Jennifer Ashe & Son have been exceptional in their assistance over the last few weeks, but it should not be down to the goodwill of local, family-run funeral directors like them to help recoup the cost of funeral plans that have been fairly paid-for, for a number of years by honest, hard-working individuals like my father.” 

Bob Lee’s funeral will be held on Saturday 20th January at 10am at Lichfield District Crematorium. 

Press release information


Image File:


Area / Region:

Topics / Tags:

Notes to editors

Jennifer Ashe & Son Funeral Directors is an award-winning, family-run funeral directors, established in 2016. They specialise in providing a supportive and caring service for families across the West Midlands and Staffordshire during the difficult times of bereavement. 

Managing Director John Ashe helped his mother Jennifer establish the business almost a decade ago and under his guidance the business has grown each year. The team have branches situated across the West Midlands and Staffordshire, in Willenhall, Brownhills, Hednesford, Lichfield and Walsall, and are available via telephone 24 hours a day, every day of the week to help families in need. 

Follow Jennifer Ashe & Son on Facebook:

Media contact

Media contact name:

Conor Davies

Media contact business / organisation:


Media contact telephone:


Media contact email:

All done!
Thank you for subscribing.

Email Subscription