A TEENAGER has become the fifth generation of his family to take up a job with their funeral directing business, which is still going strong more than 100 years on.

Ethen Adams, 16, has become an IT and administration apprentice with AR Adams Funeral Directors – following in the footsteps of his great, great grandfather, who started the company in 1900.

In 1914 the business moved out of Poplar, in the East End of London to Thundersley and has since opened offices in Rayleigh and Thorpe Bay.

Ethen’s appointment comes at a time when the business has been crowned the best funeral director’s in the country at the Good Funeral Awards.

Bradley Adams, one of five company directors, said: “We’re very proud to say we’re a truly family firm. None of us have put pressure on our children to join the business.

“He did his work experience here and it’s really nice for him to have chosen to come back and start his apprenticeship. The more he found out about the company the more keen he was to join.

“We have records going back to the Thirties and we have been looking after some families for generations, so it is nice to be able to say when people come in, that our family will look after their family.”

Bradley works as a company director with hismum, June, and three siblings Samantha, Donna and Luke. His son Ethen is the latest recruit.

The teenager, a former pupil at Rayleigh’s Sweyne Park School, is paralysed from the neck down, the result of a childhood illness.

He decided to join the family business after completing his GCSEs this summer.

The company was formed by Ethen’s great, great grandfather, Archibald Richard Adams, more than 100 years ago and after expanding to Thundersley in 1914, they expanded it further and moved into their Rayleigh site 16 years later.

AR Adams died in 1949 and the London sites of the business were sold off, but his family remained in south Essex and have kept his name going for another 65 years.

The Good Funeral Guide named the business Funeral Director of the Year after praising the personal service it provided, its old-fashioned morals and high level of care.

Donna added: “We would not have won the award without the hard work and dedication of everyone here.

“The award is really a testament to their integrity and professionalism and to the dedication they have in caring for the families who come to us.

“We have been overwhelmed and humbled by the words of kindness from the local community and the families we have served.”