Crewe Crematorium is to be given a major £1.5m revamp to improve facilities for the bereaved.
The works include extending the building, boosting seating capacity, improving toilet facilities and increasing parking.
Crewe Crematorium, located in Crewe Cemetery, will get a single-storey extension to the front of the existing building. The extension will consist of an arrival area, a book of remembrance alcove and an area where bereaved families can wait more comfortably.
External walls of remembrance will be built to both the front and side of the existing building to replace the ‘carriage porch’ (porte cochere).
The interior will get an extra 32 seats – increasing capacity by nearly 50 per cent from the current total of 68 seats. There will also be an extension of the ‘hearing loop’ through which those who are hard of hearing can access the service.
Toilet facilities will be improved as the existing chapel of rest will be converted into male, female and disabled toilets. Additional parking spaces will be available, including additional disabled parking.
Councillor Michael Jones, Leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “This is excellent news for users of this facility and shows our commitment to deliver improved, quality services for residents.
“When we created our arms-length companies, we did this so we could develop ways of investing in our facilities. So, we are building new leisure centres and we are improving our existing facilities – something that has needed to happen for a long, long time.”
Councillor David Marren, chairman of Orbitas – Cheshire East Council’s arms-length company which runs Cheshire East’s cemeteries and bereavement services, said: “This scheme will enable us to provide an even better quality of service for people at what is very often a difficult and emotional time.
“The extension of the crematorium will allow up to 32 more mourners to attend a service for a departed loved one. Not only will extra seats be added but also a cover will be included to shelter mourners before a service, where at the present time mourners have to stand in bad weather.
“The new corridor system will also prevent the bereaved from the previous service from walking directly past the mourners who are attending the next service – giving mourning families and friends a greater sense of privacy and dignity, while reducing the distress felt by both parties.”
The work is due to start in May 2015 and set to be completed by early autumn.
The work will be done outside crematorium opening hours and services will take place as normal. Every effort will be made to keep any impact of the work to a minimum and Orbitas thanks the public in advance for their patience and understanding.
For information about Crewe Crematorium and Cemetery, visit the Council’s website at: