Four generations of the family are currently part of the funeral firm: Tony Rowland, at 79 years old, is Muriel’s eldest son, 51 year old Stephen is Muriel’s eldest grandson and 28 year old Ben is her eldest great-grandson.
Muriel met her future husband, Arthur, at the age of 17. Their first date was at the London Associations funeral directors’ banquet at the Greyhound in 1934. Muriel and Arthur were married for 42 years until Arthur passed away in 1976. Today, the mother of four has 14 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.
Muriel began working for Rowland Brothers in 1937, with Harry Rowland, Arthur’s father, to provide an out of hours service. She still works at the company’s head office in Whitehorse Road, Croydon.
One of the first people into the office every morning, Muriel gets up at 4am and is collected by a driver at 7am. She complete all logs for the funerals and repatriations Rowland Brothers have completed during the week and ensures that all records of clients services are accurately kept on paper. At midday one of the drivers takes her home.