Opened £8.5m cre­ma­to­rium ready for role in com­mu­nity

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS - By ROBIN JENK­INS robin.jenk­[email protected]­

BOR­OUGH coun­cil bosses are hop­ing prob­lems with cre­ma­tions in Chel­tenham will be a thing of the past, now they have opened a new £8.5mil­lion cre­ma­to­rium.

It has been built at the far north eastern end of the town’s ceme­tery, off Bouncer’s Lane.

From Mon­day, it will hold ser­vices in larger and more mod­ern build­ings.

The two new chapels have re­placed ones that opened in 1938 and were no longer con­sid­ered to be fit for pur­pose.

That was es­pe­cially be­cause there had been prob­lems in the pre­vi­ous five years with the burn­ers used for cre­ma­tions.

At times, it meant that al­though ser­vices could still be held in Chel­tenham, fu­neral di­rec­tors had to ar­range for cre­ma­tions to take place else­where - in places such as Glouces­ter and fur­ther afield in south Wales and Som­er­set.

Now the new cre­ma­to­rium has been built, the coun­cil will have to find a new use for the old chapels. They can not be de­mol­ished be­cause they are listed.

Of­fi­cials were keen to show how much big­ger and brighter the two new chapels are. They also un­veiled the new burn­ers at the site.

Ser­vices will now be more per­sonal, with new tech­nol­ogy of­fer­ing mu­sic, read­ings and video to com­ple­ment the life that a per­son has led.

Coun­cil­lor Chris Cole­man, the coun­cil’s cab­i­net mem­ber for clean and green en­vi­ron­ment, said: “This is a sig­nif­i­cant mo­ment for Chel­tenham’s be­reave­ment ser­vices and the new fa­cil­i­ties will pro­vide a first class ser­vice for our res­i­dents, the sur­round­ing ar­eas, and all who will use our be­reave­ment ser­vices.”

Ben Jenk­ins, the author­ity’s be­reave­ment ser­vices man­ager, said: “With the new fa­cil­ity, I am look­ing for­ward to the fu­ture of be­reave­ment ser­vices, and what we can now of­fer to all who will use our first class pro­vi­sion for many years to come.”

Town mayor Coun­cil­lor Bernie Fisher (LD, Swin­don Vil­lage) cut the rib­bon to open the cre­ma­to­rium. He said: “It’s well worth the money. It’s a great fa­cil­ity that will be here for gen­er­a­tions.”

The new cre­ma­to­rium in Chel­tenham. Be­low, Town mayor Coun­cil­lor Bernie Fisher cuts the rib­bon

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