Nearly half of British cemeteries will be full in 20 years time
Saturday 28 September 2013
Calls are being made for grave plots to be "re-used" in a bid to tackle the current shortfall in spaces for burying the dead.
Research by the BBC's local radio stations has found that more than nearly half of cemeteries (44 per cent) could be full within the next two decades, with a quarter full within the next decade.
An academic is now calling for a change in legislation to allow graves older than 75 years to be reused, in order to avert a "crisis".
Some local authorities, such as Tandridge district council, said they had already run out of space for new graves. Cannock Chase District Council, according to the data, has just over a year before they run out of land for new graves.
The cost of dying has risen to an average £7,622 - a 7.1 per cent increase on last year, according to a report earlier this month by insurer Sun Life Direct.
The figure, which includes costs such as probate, headstones and flowers as well as the funeral, varies significantly across the regions, with London the most expensive at £9,556. Wales was the least expensive with an average cost of £6,096.
The cost of a funeral has also increased by 5.3 per cent since last year to £3,456, or 80 per cent higher than in 2004.
Burial fees have risen by 69 per cent since 2007 and cremation fees by 51 per cent, according to the report.
The average burial now costs £3,914 and cremation £2,998.
Dr Julie Rugg, of the University of York's cemetery research unit said the survey highlighted how "desperate" the situation was across the country.
Speaking to the BBC, she said: “It's not just a London or a big town problem. Even small parish councils are wondering how they are going to cope when land runs out,” she said.
"We spend a lot of time thinking that's a problem, something we don't want - it brings money back into our cemeteries, it brings people back into our cemeteries," she told BBC Breakfast.
"Cemeteries become vibrant places then, where you can meet people, not these places that are a little bit abandoned, a little bit sad and lonely and neglected.
"When you go on to the continent, cemeteries are often full of people. That is not a bad thing."
“I don't know how much more evidence there needs to be on the table before the Ministry of Justice appreciates that this is a crisis.”
The Ministry of Justice said the case "was under constant review".
filmFilm producers sue Warner Bros for $75m over Hobbit films
sportNapoli 2 Arsenal 0: Gunners must now face either Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid or Barcelona in knock-out stages
Swedish stars ask fans for £195 pledges on crowd-funding website
voicesJust when you thought you could find a man, get married, and have a baby by the age of 35... it turns out you’re too late, says Grace Dent
musicAs Mariah Carey and Noddy Holder rake in the royalties from their classics, why there hasn't been a decent festive hit for 20 years?
theatreAuthor Daniel Rosenthal recalls the mishaps that almost brought the curtain down on the likes of John Gielgud and Diana Rigg
lifeAs the Royal Mail plans to phase out deliveries on two wheels, it's no wonder posties are in a spin
musicThe 21-year-old beat Ella Eyre and Chlöe Howl to win the honour
lifeFull of the joys and want to help your fellow man? December isn't the time to do it
techLuke Blackall reports on precision engineered prams and babygros that monitor your child 24-7
Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute in Soweto
David Cameron explains selfie with Obama and Helle Thorning-Schmidt at Mandela Memorial
French café starts charging extra to rude customers
Krokodil in Mexico? Teenager hospitalised after 'injecting drug into her genitals'
Australia incest case: Severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
- 1 Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute in Soweto
- 2 French café starts charging extra to rude customers
- 3 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 4 Is Facebook making us forget? Study shows that taking pictures ruin memories
- 5 Australia incest case: Severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: English te...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: SEN English Teacher required to sta...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education has been asked e...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: English Teacher needed for a Januar...