County planners refuse St Asaph crematorium plans


Alex Watt

THERE was relief among residents of Cefn Meiriadog today as county planners knocked back an application to build a crematorium near their homes.

15 members of Denbighshire's planning committee voted against the proposal by Memoria Ltd. Only four members supported the plan while another four abstained.

St Asaph County Councillor Bill Cowie recommended the refusal at today’s planning meeting.

He said: “Is there a need? The answer has to be yes.

Is the site suitable? The answer has to be no. The funeral directors have said no which speaks volumes.

Once the land is gone, it’s gone forever.”

Concerns about accessibility to the site near Glascoed Road and that the proposals went against Denbighshire's Local Development Plan (LDP) were raised at the meeting.

The public transport access to the site was also brought into question, despite Memoria's assertions that they would work with the bus companies to add bus stops and improve transport links to Glascoed Road.

Councillor Cowie added: “I have been pushing for the last few years for bus stops and was told that it was too dangerous.

It is too dangerous along the whole length of that road and this development is not located where there will be good access.”

The location was also discussed with a number of councillors worried about the facility being built on agricultural land in the open countryside.

Huw Evans, member of the Cefn Meiriadog Community Council, was one of those who spoke against the proposal.

He said: “There are a lot of people who live in this beautiful area who would be affected by the decision.

Most of you here today will make a decision and it won't affect you but it will affect us.

To you it is just another village but to us it is so much more.”

Jamieson Hodgson, business development director at Memoria Ltd, said:
“Memoria is a small, family run business, not a big developer.

There is ongoing interest in creating a first rate facility in Denbighshire.

The officers' confidence in this site is reflected in their recommendation.”

Planning members acknowledged there is a need for a crematorium in the county but felt the Glascoed Road site was not suitable.

After the meeting Martin Barlow, chairman of Cefn Meiriadog and Glascoed Road Residents and Users Group, who have objected against the plans, said: “I have to say that right has prevailed.

The decision that was made was the right decision because if is in keeping with Denbighshire’s Local Development Plan (LDP).

It would have been a bit of a travesty if the LDP had been contravened.”

Local residents protested outside County Hall, Ruthin, this morning before the meeting began.

See full story in the Free Press

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