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Warning from Norfolk crematorium over limit on numbers who can attend funerals

PUBLISHED: 11:55 30 September 2020 | UPDATED: 11:55 30 September 2020

Numbers attending funerals are restricted because of coronavirus  Picture: Getty/Isockphoto

Numbers attending funerals are restricted because of coronavirus Picture: Getty/Isockphoto

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Mourners could be turned away from funerals if too many people turn up.

That’s the heart-wrending warning from a council-run crematorium, to dispel claims that while numbers who can attend services are restricted, more people may gather outside.

West Norfolk council said the number of people permitted to attend funerals at Mintlyn, near King’s Lynn, is currently 30.

Chris Black, the council’s cemeteries and crematorium manager, said: “Losing a loved one at any time is a sad and distressing experience and, under normal circumstances, funerals are the perfect way to come together with friends and family to celebrate a person’s life.

“Unfortunately, due to coronavirus, we must stick to the new guidelines of limiting the number of mourners and sticking to social distancing guidelines.

“These are in place to protect vulnerable people as well as our staff who continue to deliver a vital role during the pandemic.”

Mr Black said he was disturbed to see notices online suggesting that more people can gather at the site, even though they can’t go in to crematorium.

“This is not the case,” he said.”The limit on the number of people attending is 30, whether at the crematorium or cemetery.

“It can be very distressing for those that have turned up if they have to be sent away, because the limit of 30 has been exceeded.”

Mourners must maintain a safe distance of at least two metres, while anyone displaying symptoms of Covid-19 should not attend.

The use of face-coverings within the chapel is also now mandatory, except for those that are exempt due to health conditions. Track and trace procedures are also in place.

Mr Black said free live streaming facilities were on offer to give friends and family the chance to watch the service from the safety of their homes.

Council cabinet member Paul Kunes said: “The team at Mintlyn Crematorium have worked tirelessly to ensure they can meet the demand for services at the same time as maintaining appropriate cleaning regimes and ensuring that both mourners and staff are safe.

“In these difficult and challenging times, we need people to follow the rules and ask funeral directors to do what they can to support our staff by sharing this message.”


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