Cemetery provision in North Lanarkshire to be expanded

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Cemetery provision in North Lanarkshire will be expanded, and burial and cremation fees for children are to be abolished.

Bedlay Cemetery in Moodiesburn, New Monkland Cemetery in Glenmavis, and Coltswood Road Cemetery in Coatbridge, are all earmarked for expansion to allow for more burial spaces, and a new cemetery providing for Wishaw will also be built at Pather Farm.

North Lanarkshire Council provides around 2000 burials per year, with many taking place in new lairs. The council currently operates 15 cemeteries.

Wishaw needs a new cemetery because there is no land available to further expand Cambusnethan Cemetery. Designs for the new facility at Pather Farm are currently being drafted.

Cambusnethan and Eastfield cemeteries provide for Muslim burials. The amount of space available for this purpose is currently being monitored.

Following an agreement by the Scottish Government and the CoSLA, all fees connected to child burial have been removed.

Although the agreement does not cover stillborn babies or non-viable foetuses, council policy is to not charge a burial fee under these circumstances.

The expansion of cemeteries is being funded at a cost of £3.38 million from the council’s capital budget for 2018-2023. The Scottish Government is providing an additional £18,000 per annum to offset the loss of income from not charging for child burials.

When the report was presented to the council’s Environment and Transportation Committee there was some discussion over whether the land could be used for other purposes, as a number of sports clubs had contacted local representatives seeking more land for their facilities.

Councillor Michael McPake stated excellent facilities were already available for this purpose although some other members said demand was too high for all clubs to be served.

The committee agreed to note the provision of new lairs, backed the efforts to secure new land for Bedlay, New Monkland and Coltswoood Road and approved the new cemetery for Wishaw.

Neil McGrory - Local Democracy Reporting Service