Plans drawn up for new woodland burial ground in Cromer

Cromer could soon become home to a woodland burial site as plans to establish one in the town are being drawn up.

Land behind the town's existing cemetery off Holt Road is being earmarked for the 55-acre site, that would offer burials and internments and extend up to Tower Road in Aylmerton.

The site is being proposed by landowner David Oliver who said his plans had been welcomed by community leaders from Cromer, Felbrigg and Aylmerton.

Mr Oliver said: 'At the moment I have to say, by and large, the reception has been very favourable.

'Colney (Woodland Burial Park) is the only other one in Norfolk that's operational, all the undertakers we have spoken to say that they think it would be very desirable.

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'And I think it's a very good use for what I always intended to remain as woodland.'

He added: 'I think there is undoubtedly a demand for this type of facility and one can see why if you go and have a look at Colney it's really quite delightful.'

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The burial ground would be supported by two or three buildings, including a ceremonial hall that would host services, and is expected to generate a handful of full and part-time jobs. It would be run as a non-denominational facility but individual graves could be blessed.

Mr Oliver is now working on a planning application, which he hopes to have submitted to North Norfolk District Council by May.

He said regardless of whether permission was given, the woodland would have to be thinned 'for the good of the trees', but this work would not be able to take place until September or October to allow for the nesting season.

If given the go-ahead by planners it is hoped the site could open for services at the beginning of next year.

The country's first natural burial ground was established in Carlisle in 1993 and there are now more than 260 across the UK.

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