Building work has started on a new crematorium and cemetery to serve Rugby and Daventry, located off Ashlawn Road.
Councillors from the Rugby and Daventry Crematorium Joint Committee, which is overseeing the project on behalf of Rugby Borough Council and Daventry District Council, were on hand to watch as contractors started the building project.
Work is expected to take about ten months.
Planning permission for the facility was granted in September last year. Since then, officers from both councils have been working with the contractor Willmott Dixon Construction and design team to meet planning conditions, including requirements relating to archeology and detailed design.
Cllr Dr Mark Williams, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for sustainable environment, said: “We know from enquiries we’re already receiving that our residents can see the many benefits of having a council-run cemetery and crematorium close in their area. We’re keen to get this facility up and running for their benefit as soon as possible.”
Councillor Alan Hills, Community, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder at Daventry District Council, said: “It’s great news that work on the new crematorium and cemetery has started, which will provide a much needed resource for residents living in our District who currently have to travel as far as Northampton and Banbury for similar facilities.”
Nick Brown, building manager at Willmott Dixon, said: “After months of planning and preparation we are pleased to be on site and ready to start construction of the new crematorium and cemetery, which will serve the local community as a place of remembrance for people of all faiths and cultures.
“With a shortage of burial space in Rugby, the Borough Council along with Daventry District Council recognised the need to provide the residents of Daventry and Rugby with the space and the facilities to be able to mourn and remember their loved ones without having to travel long distances to do so. Over the next nine months, Willmott Dixon will be working hard to ensure the delivery of the building, working considerately with due care and attention to minimise any disruption caused to local residents during construction. The result will be a crematorium that fits sensitively into the surrounding landscape.”
The original case for a crematorium facility was put together by a cross-party group of Rugby Borough councillors, who unanimously concluded that the scheme would benefit residents of the Borough.
It was subsequently identified the new crematorium would also benefit Daventry District and the two councils have worked together on the project since then.