A Lib Dem candidate in the general election has been called “tasteless” and immature after he took a selfie in front of a crematorium furnace and used the image on the dating app Tinder.
Josh Mason, 26, can be seen posing in the photo in front of the opening to the furnace at Kirkleatham Memorial Park and Crematorium near Yearby.
The image, obtained by Political Scrapbook, comes as Mr Mason prepares to defend his party’s 5,000-vote majority in the Redcar seat soon to be vacated by retiring MP Ian Swales.
He is also the deputy leader of the Redcar and Cleveland Council – and local Labour activist Bob Norton said he was worried that “such insensitive people are leading [the] council”.
In a statement, Mr Mason confirmed that he had taken the selfie and said he regretted “any offence I may have caused”.
According to Political Scrapbook, the crematorium was being toured by a group of local politicians at the time but has already been used by some 400 families.
Mr Mason told BBC North East: “Being born and bred in Redcar and Cleveland, I imagine that one day, Yearby Crematorium will be my own final destination.
@annaturley Josh Mason - Crematorium selfie. Worry that such insensitive people are leading in council. Lacks maturity not ready for office— Bob Norton (@bob4labour) February 22, 2015
Bizarre & disrespectful: LibDem Redcar candidate speaks of his regret after posting crematorium selfie -Gazette Live http://t.co/sx2ehPV42K— Anna Turley (@annaturley) February 22, 2015
“My visit there was a stark reminder of our shared mortality. Indeed, I have already said a last 'goodbye' to a number of family friends and colleagues there.
“Nevertheless, I deeply regret any offence I may have caused.”