Tributes to former funeral director Raymond Howarth

Raymond Howarth, founder of Howarth Joiners and Undertakers, who has died at the age of 91.
Raymond Howarth, founder of Howarth Joiners and Undertakers, who has died at the age of 91.
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Tributes have been paid to former funeral director Raymond Howarth who has died at the age of 91.

Mr Howarth, who founded Howarth Joinery and Undertakers in 1954, died on May 25 after a battle with dementia.

He was also the president of the national association of funeral directors for the Wakefield and Dewsbury area before he retired in 1989.

His son Ian said: “My dad Raymond was very well known in the area.

“When I was a child me and my dad couldn’t walk down the street without someone stopping us and recognising my dad.”

Mr Howarth was the first person in the district to gain a diploma in funeral directing and he also built the first purpose-built chapel of rest on Alverthorpe Road.

He handed over the joinery business to his sons Alan and Colin before working on Howarth Funeral Services until his retirement at the age of 66.

He was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia before he died in hospital.

Mr Howarth leaves behind his wife Dorothy, who he married 71 years ago.

He also leaves three sons, four grandchildren and six great grandchildren.

His funeral will take place at St James’ Church, Thornes on Monday, June 8 from 8pm.

The family has asked for donations in lieu of flowers to be made to Admiral Nurses for Wakefield.