Published: 09:00, 14 September 2017
| Updated: 09:07, 14 September 2017
A gravedigger has scooped a prestigious award at this year’s annual national Good Funeral Awards - known as the "Death Oscars".
The awards, which have been running for the past two years, were held at The Porchester Hall, in London, and celebrated the work that goes into giving families the perfect send off for their loved ones.
Martin House, the burial site manager at Eden Valley Woodland Burial Ground, was named Gravedigger of the Year during Monday’s ceremony.
Martin, from Edenbridge, has been running the burial ground for just two years and digs each grave by hand to avoid disturbing the surrounding nature reserve with heavy duty equipment.
His nomination was supported by families and funeral directors who have used the site in the past year.
Martin said: “To receive the highest award in my industry after only my second year is truly amazing. I am really touched by all the positive feedback I have received.
“My job to support people in their time of need is such a privilege and I am truly honoured to receive this award.”
Martin runs Eden Valley Burial Ground on behalf of the Natural Death Centre charity with his wife Amy and young son and daughter.
The site, which only opened in July 2015, also won runner-up in the “Cemetery of the Year” category.
Its ethos is to give a cost-effective, gentle and environmentally friendly route for those who are unfortunately having to make funeral arrangements, creating a woodland legacy and protecting part of our Kent countryside.
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