Cemetery requires major work

A CONSIDERABLE amount of work is required to ensure Skegness Cemetery is correctly regulated and equipped to bury the town’s dead, Skegness Town Council has determined.

A task and finish group established to look at the cemetery’s future provision in the wake of concerns over burial ground shortages, expects the project to take ‘years rather than months’.

Speaking at a direction and strategy meeting on Wednesday Coun Phil Kemp said it caused him ‘great despair’ to see the amount of work required, particularly as the council had discussed many of the issues previously without making any progress.

Coun Sid Dennis was disappointed by Coun Kemp’s disparaging remarks which he felt would ‘motivate nothing’ and urged for a more positive attitude to achieve the goals set out.

Town clerk Steve Larner explained that the cemetery extension was less pressing than originally feared as without an ‘epidemic or a change the history of purchasing graves,’ burial plots were unlikely to run out as rapidly as previously expected. Faced with previous delays and the rising cost of land, however, several councillors felt it wise to ‘get on with it’ rather than risk further set backs.

Further investigations into the council’s administrative procedures and record keeping identified worrying short-comings, which Coun Dennis felt warranted urgent attention to prevent the council from entering into an ‘illegal position’.

Proposals to create a garden of remembrance named in honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee were met with a mixed response.

Coun Sue Binch felt it was ‘badly needed’ as many other cemeteries already provided mourners with a contemplative area to reflect on their dead loved ones. However, Coun Kemp was not sure ‘the Queen would be happy being associated with dead people’ and Coun Tina Mellors felt the name could be dated if the project was not completed in time for the Diamond Jubilee.

The council will also look into maintenance contracts.