Lyndhurst was founded and incorporated in 1954 and began business on January 1, 1955, from the home of its founder Mr. Colin Parkinson in Strathclyde, a stone’s throw from its present location at Passage Road, St. Michael. One of the several small plantations in urban Barbados is said to have occupied the present site.
Before Lyndhurst was Parkinson and Gill, and before that establishment was Burton and Company at Pinfold Street near the YMCA, which was owned by Bob “Poor Bob” Parravicino.
An impressive pantheon of funeral directors and morticians is associated with this institution – Parravicino, Burton, Parkinson, Gill, Lewis, Bryan and Griffith.
Colin Parkinson went to work with John Burton in 1941. He and a Mr. Lewis were soon jointly running the business after the death of Mr. Burton. Around 1951, they were joined by George Gill, who would later form a company known as Parkinson and Gill Ltd, at a property known as Lyndhurst.
In 1955, their first and best year of business, they conducted a grand total of 459 funerals. The company was so successful that 10 years later it bought out Burton and Company and the Parravicinos became 23 percent shareholders.
Funeral homes abounded: names like Smith, Tudor, Hall and Hinds, Codrington, Belgrave, Greene, Moore and Browne, among others.
Competition in those days was razor sharp; practices to acquire work ranged from the ethical to the unethical to the ridiculous. Gradually, the environment took on a more sophisticated tone with the arrival of improved technology, training of practitioners and other procedures.
Meanwhile, a young Barbadian had packed up and left for England with his wife and baby son, to study the science of embalming and other preservation techniques. On his return in 1979, Peter Griffith joined Lyndhurst and ushered in a new approach to all aspects of the business. After four years at Lyndhurst, Griffith branched out on his own and opened Barbados Funeral Service at Cheapside in Bridgetown. By 1987, he was invited back to take over the reins at Lyndhurst as Colin Parkinson went into retirement after nearly 40 years in the business.
Griffith and a former partner of Lyndhurst, Michael Bryan, both returned and reorganized the company, but the association lasted only three years when Bryan departed again, leaving Griffith the sole proprietor.
At Lyndhurst, our most prized asset is our staff. The company employs 28 people, most of whom have been with us for several years. From the office staff to operators of vehicles to maintenance staff, all are dedicated people who go on beyond the call of duty on a daily basis.