Mr Clarke, who has worked as a funeral director for over 20 years and now runs his independent, family-owned firm at High Barnes and Castletown in Sunderland, was given the award following letters sent in by numerous clients who described his “outstanding care and commitment”.
Mr Clarke said of the award: “One morning I arrived at my office and received a phone call from the managing director at Sun FM asking me to attend a dinner for the Sun FM Annual Business Awards at the Sunderland Stadium of Light. I was extremely happy and surprised to hear that I was nominated in the category of Business Man of the Year 2012. I have to say it seemed like a long night waiting for the results, then to be told I’d won … I was shocked! There were hundreds at the awards ceremony and I was touched that I had been chosen among so many other businesses in this category.
“I would just like to thank all my clients and friends who took the time to send their nominations, also to the management of Sun FM radio station and to my business partners Mrs Lynda Scanlan, Mrs Heather Bolton and Mr Chris Bolton for support they have shown to me over my two years of business. Also, I would like to give a big thank you to my wonderful staff Jonny, Matty, Chris, Tony and Amy for the support they have shown.”
Mr Clarke is also a student of the Independent Funeral Directors College where he is furthering his education on the G1 and G2 modules of a foundation course.