Cremation industry remembers Earl Grey as ‘a lovely man’ and ‘inspirational leader’

13:00 23 September 2013

Richard Grey, the sixth Earl Grey.

Richard Grey, the sixth Earl Grey.


A passionate and well-loved member of the House of Lords, a descendant of a former prime minister and chairman of the Golders Green-based London Cremation Company, has died aged 74.

Richard Grey, the sixth Earl Grey, who was born in 1939, died after a short illness on September 10.

Lord Grey’s ancestry included some famous figures, including the second Earl Grey, prime minister from 1830 to 1834, who gave his name to Earl Grey tea and was responsible for the landmark Reform Act of 1832.

As well as his work in the House of Lords, he was president of the Cremation Society of Great Britain, which promotes the practice of incinerating corpses, and chairman of the London Cremation Company in Golders Green.

Cremation Society chairman Harvey Thomas said: “Richard was a lovely man. He was an inspirational leader of both the Cremation Society and the London Cremation Company for over two decades, during which time both have moved significantly forward.

“His delightful personality and fabulous sense of humour were just two reasons why he was able to achieve so much, both in business and in his charity work.

“He used to say in board meetings, ‘We are a happy company’. This is certainly true and Richard’s leadership played a major role in making it so. We all miss him personally as a loyal friend and the cremation movement will miss him deeply as an inspired leader.”

After studying quantity surveying, Lord Grey became a full-time member of the House of Lords from 1976 onwards. He was the Liberal Party’s spokesman on social services, giving particular attention to disability policies.

In 1979, he hosted the visit to London of 350 indigenous Canadians to help them lobby Parliament for the return of their land rights and for political recognition.

Among his many duties, Lord Grey was an official observer of the 1980 election in Rhodesia –which paved the way for the then British colony’s independence as Zimbabwe – and secretary to the House of Lords small business group from 1980 to 1984.

In 1992, the board of the London Cremation Company, based in Hoop Lane, Golders Green, invited Lord Grey to be its chairman and shortly afterwards he was asked to take on the charity role of president of the Cremation Society of Great Britain.

Lord Grey is survived by his wife Stephanie, the Dowager Countess Grey. His funeral is expected to be held at Golders Green Crematorium on either October 14 or 15.


Latest News Stories

33 minutes ago
Tulip Siddiq is expecting a baby in April

Hampstead and Kilburn MP Tulip Siddiq said she was likely to vote against the package of measures that Prime Minister David Cameron introduced to the Commons last week.

Yesterday, 17:56
Squatters at 156 West End Lane in West Hampstead are evicted

Squatters have left empty former council offices in West Hampstead peacefully on Saturday morning after bailiffs arrived.

Yesterday, 15:11
Evidence for the trial

A woman from Crouch Hill has been disqualified from owning animals for life after keeping dogs in cages stacked on top of each other nearly every day.

Yesterday, 14:03
Claudia Tabitha, 23, Big Issue vendor. Photo: Polly Hancock

A pregnant Big Issue vendor has been overwhelmed by generous offers of support from local parents.

Yesterday, 12:14
Neelu Berry

An activist making claims of satanic abuse at a Hampstead church could face three new charges of witness intimidation.

Sunday, November 29, 2015
Hornsey Town Hall Appreciation Society members. From left Amanda Carrara, Chris Currer, Mark Afford, Miriam Levin and Dave Winskill.

The fight for community ownership of Hornsey Town Hall continues, even though the council officially invited bids from developers last week.

Sunday, November 29, 2015
Expedition 45 Commander SCOTT KELLY took this selfie photograph during a 7-hour and 16-minute spacewalk. This was the first spacewalk for both Kelly and Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren; the two will venture outside the International Space Station for the second time on next Friday. Kelly becomes the U.S. astronaut who has lived in space the longest during a single U.S. spaceflight, and on Monday, Nov. 2, the crew celebrates the 15th year of a continuous human presence in space aboard the station. (Credit Image: © NASA/ZUMA Wire)

Young gardeners are preparing for a close encounter of the herbaceous kind when they attempt to grow seeds from outer space.

Sunday, November 29, 2015
Keir Starmer arrives with his wife Victoria at the election count. Picture: Polly Hancock

It’s been six months since Sir Keir Starmer won the safe Labour seat of Holborn and St Pancras by a huge majority.

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot


Nike Trainers

Nike’s motto is ‘to bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.’ With this in mind it’s no surprise why Nike is the preferred training gear for most A-list athletes. Get an extra boost in your run or height in your jump with £500 to spend on Nike trainers.

MAC Makeup

MAC are renowned for their flawless, fabulous make up that is used worldwide by the stars. You too can have the chance to have the perfect makeup to suit your needs with £1,000 to spend on all the glam goodies you like!

Digital Edition

Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder