Rival bid for crematorium

Cllr Peter Morrall
Cllr Peter Morrall

A private company has applied for planning permission to build a crematorium in Wellingborough, despite the local council having already begun plans for its own crematorium in the town.

Wellingborough Council started discussing the possibility of building a crematorium, at a cost of between £2m and £4m, last September.

A feasibility study, looking into everything from where it could be built to how it could be run, has since been carried out.

A spokesman for the local authority said the council was pressing ahead with its own plan and a decision would be made by the end of October.

But Mercia Crematoria Developments Ltd last week submitted a planning application to Wellingborough Council, looking for permission to build on land east of Doddington Road.

Cllr Peter Morrall, who is chairman of the crematorium working party, said: “Our initial research showed that a crematorium is a local service that people want.

“We had a lot to consider before any definite plans could be put in place and that’s why we carried out the feasibility study.

“Not only do we have to find a site and decide what facilities we can offer, we also have to look at different faith needs, equipment and technology, how we would staff and manage it, what the governance arrangements would be, and come up with long-term financial plans, including looking at nearby competition, estimated death rates and so on.

“A degree of commercial competition to develop a crematorium has emerged since we made our intentions public at the beginning of the year and a planning application has recently been received for a crematorium near Great Doddington.

“The option to partner with a commercial developer is something that may be considered in due course, but at the moment we are pressing ahead with our own plans.”