Ewing Funeral Service prides itself on continually investing in a modern, up to date fleet of cars to allow us to provide the best service to our clients. Our view is that a funeral director without a hearse is like a plummer without a spanner!
So we have a fleet to cover the essential work of a funeral director with our new Ford Mondeo Cardinal hearse the pride of the fleet. Joining our fleet in March 2016, the hearse has fine modern looks, whilst maintaining the classic dignity of many of our previous hearses.
We prefer subtlety to show when it comes to attending deaths at home or in nursing homes and so have invested in discreet removal vehicles.
Our main vehicle is the VW Sharan people carrier but this is backed up with the VW Passat All Track which also allows us to continue to operate no matter the conditions as it is an all terrain four wheel drive vehicle.
The fleet will be further boosted this Autumn with the delivery of our new larger removal vehicle, a new Coleman Milne Ford Tourneo, which will also have the ability to provide transport for up to six mourners for funerals and we intend to offer this as a less expensive option to the traditional limousine for families.
We don’t, ourselves, now own a limousine, but are able to secure those for families requiring them without any problem.
The fleet through the ages
Over the past almost 50 years, we’ve operated a number of different funeral fleets. Here we take a look back of the vehicles that have helped provide the last, dignified send off for some many folk in West Fife and Kinross-shire over those five decades.
When John Ewing first started Ewing Funeral Service in 1970 he used the classic Humber Hearse. Sadly no pictures exist of our own hearse from this time however this picture shows the exact model that we used throughout the early 1970s.
Supporting the Humber Hearse were our fleet of Austin Princess Vanden Plas limousines. First build in the 1950s such was the quality of these cars that they were still part of our fleet well into the 1980s!
No matter where John Ewing went in the country he seemed to have the knack of uncovering one of these beautiful cars, often in storage in barns and sheds etc and managing to get it repaired and back to working life.
A feature of many a Kelty wedding of the 1970s VSJ102 is pictured with wedding ribbons and the remarkable feature of this car, which was a source of delight for many a bride, was the rear opening back doors on the car (if you look closely you can see the door handle on the left, not the usual right).
At the end of the 1970s it was time to retire the Humber hearse and the company moved to a more modern car but keeping the name in line with the rest of the fleet, when the Austin Princess hearse joined the fleet. Although called a Princess it was the 1970s British Leyland car rather than the classic 50s version and whilst a very dignified vehicle, perhaps lacked the class of the Humber or the Vanden Plas.
That was to change in the mid 1980s when the fleet changed to the classic Ewing Funeral Service lineup of the Daimler DS420s.
The Daimlers were the pride and joy of the company and served us well into the 1990s bringing an extra bit of pride, distinction and with the limousines, comfort, to funerals conduct by the company at that period.
Sadly however in what was one of a number of disastrous decisions for the British motor industry of that period of history Jaguar decided to stop production of the car and as time went on the scarcity of parts and higher maintenance bills meant it was time to modernise the fleet and with the company trying to maintain the balance between providing quality and affordability for clients the decision was taken to move to the Vauxhall Omega.
This fleet and two subsequent Omega hearse and limousine sets served Ewing Funeral Service into the new millennium when the company were one of the first in Scotland to buy the then brand new Coleman Milne Ford Fairlane. It was unusual in that the base car for the hearse and limousine were based on an Australian car – the Ford Fairlane – which wasn’t available to buy in Europe.
The Fairlanes saw use over 13 years, one of the longest periods for any fleet in the company’s history, perhaps testimony to Aussie ruggardness, before in 2016 the decision was taken to replace the fleet. However with the host of a basic new hearse now reaching £90,000 plus and with a good set of contact with limousine companies they could call on for funerals, rather than have to increase prices to do a full fleet replacement, the company withdrew from owning its own limousine and concentrated on the purchase of the current Ford Mondeo hearse.
We feel that’s been a good decision as with its graceful lines, often compared to those of an Aston Martin, reliability and quality we feel that we’re still able to ensure that the final journey is still taken in the same distinguished, dignity as in the days of our founder John Ewing.