Council due to miss cemetery search deadline

THE Crow can reveal Royston Town Council will not reach the district deadline in its each for a new cemetery and will ask for an extension.

Councillors have been looking for a new site after North Herts District Council announced it would cease body burials at the Melbourn Road cemetery from January 1.

All services except the interment of ashes – and for people with family plots – are due to be moved to Wilbury Hills Cemetery, Letchworth.

The authority previously reviewed cemetery space in the town and found that Royston had only enough room for 10 years more burials.

Town council leader and member of the cemetery working party Robert Smith said: “We’re asking NHDC if they can consider giving an extension to the embargo on full body burials in Royston, which was due to come in on January 1.

“We’re not ready yet to make an announcement, so we’re asking if they can extend an embargo on full burials for a further period, possibly six months.”

The working party is still investigating a site, and the town council has paid out �2,500 for a cemetery site survey to be carried out – although it will not yet reveal where the potential site is.

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NHDC’s cabinet will hear the town council’s submission on December 13.

A spokesman said: “The council has had ongoing discussions with Royston Town Council regarding cemetery provision, and their request for an extension to the existing deadline for proposals will be addressed in a report going to the next meeting of cabinet on December 13, when a decision will be made on any recommendations.”