Corby crematorium plan still on the table

Shire Lodge Cemetery, Rockingham Road, Corby

Shire Lodge Cemetery, Rockingham Road, Corby

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An extension to Corby’s cemetery and the building of a new crematorium could still be on the cards.

The Friends of Shire Lodge Cemetery met last week to discuss the plans, as well as to talk about how to solve existing problems at the Rockingham Road site.

Cllr Mark Pengelly, the council’s lead member for environment, has made no secret of the need for an extension to the town’s largest burial site, which he estimates will become full in less than six years.

He also wants the town to have its own crematorium.

He said: “Our meeting was very well-attended. We had more than 30 people there.

“We have had a couple of thefts from graves there, which we discussed.

“Only two have been reported to us but we have agreed that we will ask Kier to do extra patrols.

“There is also an issue with grounds maintenance and flooding but and we will monitor the problem.

“We understand that people don’t want to be wading through water to get to graves but it’s been a very challenging winter in terms of rainfall and we hope things will get better now the weather is a bit nicer.

“We would encourage people who do have issues to come to us and let our officers know.

“We can’t solve problems that we don’t know about.”

Last year members voted to look into the possibility of the building of a new crematorium in the town, as well as extending the graveyard which is almost full.

Cllr Pengelly added: “We’re looking through the research we have done and we are going to bring it to our next meeting of the Friends in June.

“It’s still something we want to do.”

The crematorium plans could be hampered by a 99-year lease for the field behind the existing cemetery which was signed with Corby O’Rahilly’s Gaelic football club in 2000.

Cllr Pengelly added: “We are talking to the Gaelic football club and hoping that we can reach a solution.

“We do have to take their needs into consideration.

“There is definitely a need for a crematorium in the town.

“We know it is viable and we know from other authorities that have crematoriums that they pay for themselves.

“It wouldn’t just be open to people from Corby – it would also mean people from Rutland and the villages wouldn’t have to travel all the way to Kettering.”