When Tony Jones first joined Tapper Funeral Service he helped out with everything from cleaning cars to preparing coffins.

Now after almost 12 years, Tony is hanging up his top hat to enjoy his retirement.

Tony, 63, joined the local family run company in 2000 at the age of 51. Starting off his career at Tapper’s head office in Poole, in 2001 Tony moved to the Ringwood branch where he became manager.

Steven Tapper, joint managing director at Tapper Funeral Service, said: “It’s the end of an era. Tony has been a fundamental part of Tapper Funeral Service for so long. Over the years he has built a wealth of community knowledge which will be missed. It’s a shame to see him go but we wish him a happy retirement.”

Tony, who lives in Bournemouth, added: “My career highlight at Tapper has to be the funeral I planned in Switzerland; it was quite an experience and one I won’t ever forget.

“I am looking forward to retirement and spending my time travelling, fishing, gardening and walking the dog. I am going to miss everyone, especially the close knit community of Ringwood.”