"It's great news that the CMA has decided to launch a full market investigation into the funeral sector. This is a market where customers can be incredibly vulnerable - and it's astonishing that it's completely escaped any kind of regulation up until this point.

"The complexity and lack of transparency in the sector mean that many people pay far too much for funerals - and often there's no link between price and quality. There's an enormous variation in standards across the sector - with some firms not even having basic refrigeration to store the deceased. Often staff are completely untrained.

"We urgently need some minimum standards in the sector - and we would favour a full licensing and enforcement regime, as well as clear quality indicators that would help customers understand the differences between funeral directors.

"Scotland is already a long way down the path to improving standards in the funeral sector, and it's important that the rest of the UK catches up as quickly as possible."

Notes to Editors