The Mayor Councillor Stuart Brittain and Mayoress Anne Brittain attended the unveiling ceremony at Central England Co-operative Funeralcare’s West Bars Funeral Home, which has recently undergone an £80,000 revamp to improve the look and facilities at the historic building.
The building plays an important role in the history of the co-operative movement in Chesterfield after its purchase in 1901 by the Chesterfield & District Co-operative Provident Society, just seven years after the society was founded in New Square in 1894.
Members of the Chesterfield Co-operative Party and Chesterfield Civic Society, who helped fund the plaque, were also on hand for the unveiling along with colleagues from the funeral home and President of Central England Co-operative, Elaine Dean.
Elaine said: “I am honoured to have been able help unveil this plaque which marks the historic links of West Bars to the co-operative movement and this building’s place in Chesterfield’s co-op story. It was also wonderful to see how the improvements to the home have really enhanced its historic surroundings.
“I would like to thank the Mayor and Mayoress for kindly joining us for this special occasion, as well as Chesterfield Co-operative Party and Chesterfield & District Civic Society for funding the plaque.”
Chairman of Chesterfield & District Civic Society, Philip Riden, said: “The Civic Society is delighted to see another blue plaque going up on a prominent local building. We are especially grateful to the Chesterfield Co-operative Party and Central England Co-operative for their support which has made this possible.”
As well as the unveiling of the plaque, the ceremony also saw Margo Gasston, funeral director at West Bars, and her team joined by local clergy for a special blessing to rededicate the home following its revamp.
Margo said: “We are really proud to be part of the community in West Bars and are delighted with the improvements which have created a vastly superior look and feel for families.
“Our first priority is to enhance memories and love for all of our families and we are very pleased to offer that at West Bars Funeral Home. We feel it reflects our commitment to providing excellent standards of care for our families during their time of need.”
The revamp of the home included a fully-redecorated, reception area including new furniture and LED Lighting.
The funeral home offers a 24-hour service, seven days a week. In addition to arranging funerals, Margo and her team are also able to offer advice on floral tributes, monumental masonry, funeral stationery, pre-paid funeral plans and probate advice. The team can be contacted on 01246 220201.