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Kate Davidson appointed new chief of funeral firm Dignity

Ms Davidson will take over from Gary Channon as the company’s next chief executive officer from June 10.

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Funeral operator Dignity has named Kate Davidson as its new chief (PA)

Funeral operator Dignity has named Kate Davidson as its new chief (PA)

Funeral operator Dignity has named Kate Davidson as its new chief (PA)

Funeral giant Dignity has appointed Kate Davidson as the firm’s next top boss.

She will take over from Gary Channon as the company’s next chief executive officer from June 10, the company told investors on Monday morning.

The current chief operating officer, who has over 15 years’ experience in the funeral and crematoria industry, has been serving on the company’s board since the start of the year.

The appointment comes five days after Dignity reported a “weak” performance over the past three months after a “drop in the death rate”.

Shares slumped after it was revealed that death numbers had tumbled by 19% to 166,000 over the quarter.

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Kate Davidson will take over as chief executive officer from June (Dignity/PA)

Kate Davidson will take over as chief executive officer from June (Dignity/PA)

Kate Davidson will take over as chief executive officer from June (Dignity/PA)

Dignity was among the funeral firms witnessing a surge in deaths during the pandemic but is now coming under pressure from the successful vaccination programme and regulatory scrutiny over prices for customers.

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“It is my honour and privilege to have been appointed by the board to lead Dignity at such a critical time in its history,” Ms Davidson said.

“I am excited to bring a fresh perspective as we continue to deliver our new strategy during a period of structural, regulatory and societal change.

“Whilst my long-term aim is to build a strong and enduring business that delivers a high quality service, I am passionate about shaping a new organisational culture within what is a fairly traditional industry.”

Mr Channon said: “I have been working with Kate since she re-joined Dignity; she is an impressively effective executive who I believe will make an exceptional CEO.

“She also lives and breathes the principles and values of this new Dignity.

“We have been working interchangeably for some time and so the handover will be seamless.

“There remains a lot to do and I intend to continue assisting Kate and her team in any way in which I can be useful.”

Shares in the company were 1.8% lower in early trading.


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