Rival crematorium plans for Huntingdonshire are recommended for approval
- Credit: Archant
Two rival organisations are set to get the go-ahead to provide Huntingdonshire with its first crematorium.
Huntingdon Town Council is looking to redevelop its Jubilee Park sports area as a crematorium and cemetery, together with the relocation of the sports facilities to a nearby site, while Dignity wants to build a crematorium and memorial gardens a short distance away on land off Sawtry Way, Wyton, which falls into the parish of Broughton and King’s Ripton.
Both sets of plans are to be considered by Huntingdonshire District Council’s development management committee at its meeting on Monday - and both are being recommended for approval by planners.
The crematoria would each be capable of handling 800 cremations a year and would mean local families would no longer have to use facilities in Cambridge, Peterborough and Bedford.
Councillors will hear from the authority’s planners that the two schemes were acceptable and should be determined on their own merits.
A report to the committee said: “Until any planning permission is implemented and the crematorium facility/ies is/are in operation the recognised need will remain.
“It must be noted that the planning system cannot be used to promote one business over another and that competition is not a material planning consideration.”
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The town council scheme would cover nearly 100 acres, taking in the existing 30.8 acre Jubilee Park site and 66.6 acres of adjacent arable land.
It would provide 2,700 plots in the cemetery, with a natural burial area, function rooms, a cafe and parking for 200 cars.
It also has outline plans to create enhanced sports facilities on a nearby site with a sports hub building, 2G and 3G pitches, grass football and rugby pitches, and miniature grandstands.
The Dignity plan - which has been recommended for refusal by Kings Ripton Parish Council - involves a 11.7-acre site with memorial gardens and parking for 110 vehicles.
A 43 inch cremator would be installed instead of the usual 28 inch version.
Council planners said there was an unmet need for crematorium facilities in the area and that demand would increase because of growth in the area.
A local crematorium would also reduce travelling times for funeral corteges and would also give more time for services which can be as short as 20 minutes at existing crematoria.