A ROSE Hill funeral director who prides herself on delivering the perfect personalised send-off has reached the final of a national award.

Lucy Jane will find out today whether she has seen off the competition from nine other directors in The Good Funeral Awards.

It is the second year running the 33-year-old has been nominated for the award by her customers, representing one nomination for each year she has been based in Rose Hill.

Ms Jane, whose mother was a mortuary manager, said she was motivated to start her own business after spending time working for other companies.

She said: “Death runs in our family you could say. We see dead people quite often.

“I became a funeral director at 22 when I picked up the phone book one morning and phoned a funeral director and they had a job going.

“I thought I was really good at what I did, but I did not think there was anything in Oxford keeping up with how the industry had changed and I thought I could do better.

“There were a lot of products that had come out that people did not know about.

“People tend not to question and they just get what they are given when they are arranging a funeral. I thought that was really wrong.”

Ms Jane, who lives in Thame, said she is able to offer customers services such as motorbike hearses or colourful coffins through her company The Individual Funeral Company.

She said: “You can have a tank if you want it. As long as it is legal I am happy to do it.

“Sometimes people want to arrange the entire funeral themselves and do not actually need me apart from taking their mum to the crematorium.”

Nominations for the awards, which are run by The Good Funeral Guide, come from customers rather than industry insiders.

Ms Jane said this made her very proud as she always felt her business should be part of the community.

She said : “People will not necessarily think it is the case but we are part of quite a caring profession.

“Regardless if it is a funeral or not people can call in and see me. If I cannot help somebody, I know people who can.

“It is the best job in the world.”

Ms Jane will find out if she has won at a ceremony at the University of Winchester, but said regardless of the outcome she was happy to have made the final.