Our History


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Simon Manning commenced in business under the name Harbour City Funeral Home on 1 August 1989. His parents helped him to get started (just like parents do) and worked with him for the first 18 months of the funeral home’s operation.

Before starting his own business Simon managed E. Morris Junior funeral directors in Kent Terrace, Wellington. When the owners of E. Morris Junior merged with another funeral home, he felt that it was time to do his own thing.

Harbour City Funeral Home quickly became known for thinking outside the square, providing service based on what the client wanted rather than what tradition dictated. We are proud to be one of the most innovative funeral companies in New Zealand.

Since its inception Harbour City Funeral Home has worked to demystify funerals and place as much information as possible into the public arena to ensure the public can make informed choices. This approach puts the power and control of funerals in the hands of the families that we serve.

The demystifying process took a major step forward when Harbour City Funeral Home became New Zealand’s first funeral home to hold Open Days. On an Open Day members of the public are invited to come in and look behind the closed doors, and ask any questions about death and funerals that they want to. It is another way of assuring the public that when you are dealing with Harbour City Funeral Home, you are dealing with a company that is happy to explain what it does and that puts the people it serves first.

Harbour City Funeral Home seminars are well known in the community. No subjects are taboo. Many difficult topics – including the cost of funerals, eco funerals, and embalming – have been the focus of seminars in the past. We are committed to continuing to conduct such seminars as part of our education programme.

Another innovation for which Harbour City Funeral Home was responsible is the re-introduction of Saturday funerals to Wellington. 

This measure has broadened the choice for families as to when to hold the funeral. The ownership structure of this company is innovative too.

The shareholders are four of the staff: Simon, Danny, Brad and Geoff all work in the business, thus ensuring you have the best possible service when you need it. A truly locally owned funeral home!

Harbour City Funeral Homes