IFSO Quality Risk and Compliance Manager Natalie Thomas has been appointed to succeed Nigel Cooper as Senior Quality Risk and Compliance Manager. Natalie is well known to NAFD members, has more than sixteen years’ experience in the funeral sector having joined the team of inspectors in 2018 after a career in both independent and cooperative funeral businesses. She also holds Funeral Services and Operations Level 2 & 3 and is currently studying for her CertFAA.

“I am delighted to be stepping into Nigel’s shoes – although I am really sad he is leaving us, he will be a tough act to follow.

“The IFSO team continues to go from strength to strength. The number of inspections continues to increase as members have become used to our risk-based approach and the requirements of the Funeral Director Code. We are gathering really important and useful data on compliance and best practice, and we are using it to guide IFSO’s work and shape education opportunities to help members be the very best they can be.

“My aim is to get out and about to see members and, along with the team, to make sure we are promoting high standards in the sector at every opportunity. In particular, Scottish NAFD members are an immediate priority as the statutory regulation and licensing regime unfolds and we look forward to delivering and supporting them shoulder to shoulder to showcase their standards and achieve full compliance with the Scottish Government Code. I am particularly looking forward to the National Funeral Exhibition in June, it’s always great to meet existing and potential new members – and you will be able to find us in our own special IFSO section of the NAFD stand and we are also invited to be a part of NAFD Conference in Windsor in May – please come along to say hello.”

NAFF Chief Executive Andrew Judd added: “I would like to thank Nigel for his work over so many years, supporting members in delivering high quality service to bereaved and deceased people. I am delighted IFSO has appointed Natalie to this lead role within the QRCM team. She brings with her a wealth of experience and ideas that will support our quality assurance programme and offer members the oversight and expertise that we know they value. With the Government and Fuller Inquiry both focused on standards in the funeral sector at present, this is a very important appointment, at a very important time.”