This year we have two candidates proposed for two vacancies on our Executive. Please show your support by voting before 4.30pm on Sunday 24 September 2023. 

Jill Glencross

Jill Glencross, Jill Glencross Independent Funeral Directors Ltd, Dalston, Carlisle

Jill spent 24 years in pathology at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle before she made the move to train as a funeral director. In her previous role, Jill dealt with all the local funeral directors, HM Coroner, GPs and also the Human Tissue Authority. 

Jill started in the funeral industry in 2017 working for Dignity in Carlisle covering three branches. Jill never intended on starting her own business, however, she made the decision to open as an Independent and has been helping families at Jill Glencross Independent Funeral Directors Ltd. since October 2018.  Jill now has a staff of 19 and carries out around 400 funerals a year from one branch.  She has also opened another business which is Dalston Memorials Ltd.

She has won numerous awards from New Business of the Year 2020 to Cumbria Women of the Year 2022. Jill also started a social evening at the beginning of 2019 which runs once a month and is a great success in bringing people together.  

Jill is married to Russell who is a partner in the business.  She has two children, Abbie and Matthew.

Jill stands for election to the SAIFCharter Executive for the first time. In standing for election, Jill is willing to commit to represent the needs and challenges of all SAIFCharter members and to safeguard the ability of independent funeral directors to retain their independence.


Maria Stibbards MBIE DipFAA DipFD, S. Stibbards & Sons Ltd

 Maria’s journey in the funeral industry began in 1997, when she qualified as an embalmer with the British Institute of Embalmers (BIE). Her career as a freelance embalmer around London allowed her to gain a good knowledge of the diverse nature of the funeral industry and the communities it serves, having experience at large national funeral directors as well as their smaller family run compatriots. 

In 2012, Maria began her career at S. Stibbards & Sons Ltd and started to work with Golden Charter. She was able to bring her vast knowledge of industry working practices to enhance an already thriving business. Over the years, Maria took various qualifications in business management and teaching, as well as achieving Diplomas in Funeral Arranging and Administration and Funeral Directing.

Maria still maintains her links with the BIE and is a qualified Embalming Tutor, Chairman of the National Education Committee and Tutor Trainer, giving her excellent insight into the problems affecting modern funeral service and particularly care of the deceased.

It is within collaboration that Maria has a particular interest. Her work within the BIE has demonstrated the power that working as a group can bring and it is these skill sets that she now wishes to transfer over to the SAIFCharter Executive Committee. Responding to the challenges faced by the funeral industry can only be achieved through education, collaboration and foresight.

In addition to her role as a funeral plan manager, Maria has worked directly with Golden Charter on several projects and is contacted regularly by both Golden Charter and fellow professionals for her opinion and insight.

Maria’s dedication to her profession and vast experience in the funeral industry make her a highly respected and trusted professional. Her commitment to providing exceptional service and her continuous pursuit of excellence will make her an asset for the SAIFCharter Executive, working on behalf of fellow independent funeral directors.