Crematorium improvements will cost £1.6m

The council is to invest £1.6 million at Eastbourne Crematorium to provide improved facilities, protect the environment and comply with government legislation.

Extensive building and improvement works are to begin this month.

The project will continue until the end of the year and see the installation of mercury abatement equipment in a purpose-built extension and replacement of the three old cremators to include one that will accept larger coffins.

A number of other improvements will also be carried out during this period to minimise any disruption to services.

Improvements will include an extension to the office suite to provide a new Family Room where the bereaved can discuss their needs in private, refurbishment of the public conveniences and decoration of the Main Chapel.

The crematorium will remain operational during the works however some changes are unavoidable to ensure steady progress of the works and a consistent delivery to service users.

Service availability will be reduced while the new cremators are installed and service times will be restricted to afternoons only until all the noisy and disruptive elements of the works are completed, to avoid any disturbance of funerals.

The first services will be available from 1pm in the Main Chapel and 12.45pm in the Family Chapel.

These restrictions will be revised however as the works progress and become less intrusive.

Cllr Margaret Bannister, portfolio holder for community, said, “For many local people, the Crematorium is an important and poignant place and it is therefore right we improve the facilities there. The investment scheme will provide a more efficient experience while also protecting our environment as required by legislation. We would like to thank people for their patience as the work progresses.”

Eastbourne Crematorium holds 2,500 services a year on average.