Stokes Funeral Service was established in the Cotswolds in 1853 by Thomas Stokes. The business was passed down through the Stokes family, Eric Stokes took over the reigns of the family business in 1946, on leaving the army.
In the 1950s David Mason, then a car mechanic in his 20s, began to help Eric by driving the hearse. David continued helping out at Stokes Funeral Service whilst establishing his own garage business; Dave Mason’s Motors.
In the 1970s Stokes Funeral Service moved to the High Street. The funeral firm continued to grow, as did David’s involvement with the funeral business. Having never married or had children of his own, Eric came to think of David and his children as family. Eric and David were joined by David’s son Richard in 1984. Eric decided to take more of a backseat and the Masons became his natural successors.
By 1987 the business had outgrown its premises in the lower High Street. With David Mason at the helm, the business, now known as Mason & Stokes Funeral Service, moved to its current location at Tudor Lodge, 54 Hewlett Road, Cheltenham.
David’s daughter Joy came to work at Mason & Stokes in 1990, starting out part-time in the office. Joy is now a partner in the firm and manages the office.
David handed over the running of Mason & Stokes to Richard and Joy but continued to be a crucial part of the business until he passed away in 2014.
Today, Richard and Joy own and run Mason & Stokes with the valuable assistance of Julian, Sarah, Jessica, Andy, Daniel, Amy and Nathan. There continues to be two generations of the Mason family working together under one roof and Mason & Stokes Funeral Service remains the local family business established by Thomas Stokes.
18th November 1929 – 6th December 2014
4th January 1913 – 13th February 1994