The development of a larger cemetery is a step closer with the submission of a planning application.
Gamlingay Parish Council has now requested permission from South Cambs District Council to extend one of the village’s graveyards by adding a new section in a neighbouring agricultural field.
The community gained the land next to the parish church of St Mary the Virgin as part of the settlement for the new houses at Millbrook Meadows.
This will enable the current graveyard to be extended. It is much needed as Gamlingay has only one year’s worth of burial space left.
The other burial space at present is the graveyard by Gamlingay Baptist Church.
Part of the site, which is located to the north of Station Road and east of Church Lane, is marked as an area of archaeological interest, meaning that the first 30m by the western boundary of the site will remain undisturbed.
The application states: “The resultant cemetery will provide its visitors with an experience of beauty and tranquillity that is easily accessed by all.
“It will be sufficiently welcoming to attract members of the public who wish to walk through its grounds as a place of contemplation and reflection.”
The new cemetery area would provide enough space for 120 years worth of burials at the current rate, which is 12 per year.
Entry would be via The Emplins in Church Street and vehicles would exit from St Mary’s Road, “creating a one way system for vehicles and providing the cortège with easy access.”
There will be 18 car parking spaces and two disabled bays.
By creating more space for parking the cemetery extension would reduce parking congestion on Church Lane on days where there are funerals with large numbers of attendants.
The application says: “The burial areas will be smoothly graded and seeded to provide formal grassed lawn areas.
“The perimeter of the site along the north and south boundaries will be replanted with a conservation hedge of native species to encourage biodiversity and to separate the urban settlements to the north and south of the site from the cemetery.”
Trees to be planted include the common yew, red maple, English oak, red oak and common hornbeam.
The plantation woodland, which is near Millbridge Brook, will be retained and all existing mature trees throughout the site will be kept.
To view and comment on the application online visit http://bit.ly/1ncp15A