29/06/2012 - Permalink

New burial site planned for Shrewsbury

Related topics: Community

Proposals for a new burial site at Bowbrook in Shrewsbury are to be considered by Shropshire Council’s Cabinet next Wednesday (4 July 2012). 

With Emstrey cemetery on London Road due to close to new burials in around three years’ time, work has been carried out to identify a new site that will enable the council and its contractor, The Co-operative, to continue to provide burial services to the people of Shropshire for the next 30 years and beyond. 

The Bowbrook site – currently a green field site close to the B4386 Mytton Oak Road and the A5, and near to the Bowbrook allotments – has been selected following a detailed review and evaluation of several Shropshire Council-owned sites. 

It has been chosen as the most suitable site as it is the right size, is in a quiet area, will have good access from main roads, is close to the crematorium and to the chapel at the Longden Road cemetery, and meets a number of environmental conditions. 

If Cabinet approves the Bowbrook site at its meeting on Wednesday, a period of public consultation will be carried out, before a planning application is submitted later this year. 

People can find out more about the proposals at the Bowbrook, Copthorne and Radbrook Local Joint Committee meeting at Radbrook Primary School on Thursday 19 July 2012; and drop-in sessions at which people can also see artist’s impression of the site will be held in September 2012.  A planning application would be submitted shortly afterwards. 

It is hoped that planning permission would be obtained before the end of 2012 and that the site can be developed and ready for burials by 2013/14.

It is estimated that developing the new site would cost £1.1million, and this sum is included within the council’s capital budget for 2012/13.  Choosing council-owned land for the new site means the council will avoid the significant extra cost of purchasing land. 

Mike Owen, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member responsible for bereavement services, said:

“It’s hugely important that we start work soon on developing a new site this year, so that we can continue to provide a burial service once we are no longer able to use Emstrey, and we need to ensure a seamless transition from one site to the other. 

“Following detailed studies, we believe that the Bowbrook site is the ideal location for the new burial site.  I am confident that, once developed, it will provide an attractive, peaceful location at which people can bury their loved ones, and visit to pay their respects.”

Investigations carried out in 2011 concluded that, due to elevated groundwater levels at Emstrey, the site was unsuitable for further development for burial and a phased closure programme was agreed with the Environment Agency.  Based on current burial rates of around 100 per year,  it is estimated that burials at the site will have to end in around three years.