Campaigners have encouraged people in the borough to sign a petition against rocketing funeral prices.

The campaign group Fair Funerals aims to raise awareness about the sharp increase in prices in the past few years and the treatment people have received from some companies.

The Teddington-based group consists of five members who have all had their own negative experiences with funeral firms.

The group has been promoting its campaign in Twickenham, Richmond and Kingston and plans to finish in six weeks.

Founder David Ambaye said: “We want people to be aware that there are two big players in the industry who are controlling almost all of it. It’s a bit like having the industry making the rules for itself. From talking to people on the streets, the main feedback is that they are not aware this is the case.”

Mr Ambaye and his sister Lina Ambaye were inspired to create the group after an experience with a funeral firm following their father’s death.

He said: “When our father died, we ended up dealing with three different companies who we thought were three different firms, but they were all owned by the same one.

“The body ended up being treated badly and we couldn’t sue as the company that had dealt with it was sub-contracted and you cannot sue a sub-contracted company."

Prices in the industry have increased by 42 per cent in the last five years with a 22 per cent increase in 2009 alone.

The group was aiming to get 1,000 signatures so it can take the petition to Parliament.

For more information, visit

To volunteer for the group, call David or Lina Ambaye on 020 8977 6491.