One of the toughest aspects of life in lockdown amid the global pandemic has, without doubt, been not being able to say goodbye to loved ones, with the numbers of mourners at funerals restricted for the last few months to help slow the spread of coronavirus.
Cheltenham Borough Council had to introduce changes to crematorium services back in March, with just five people allowed to attend outside services for no longer than 15 minutes.
But, according to Gloucestershire Live, June will see more people allowed to come and pay their respects at crematoriums in Cheltenham for longer periods of time, with the local authority permitting up to 20 mourners for 25-minute services.
The new measures, introduced on June 8th, include no hymn books or printed orders of service, with words to hymns displayed on screens if required. All seating will be removed, apart from 20 chairs for those in attendance (spaced out in accordance with social distancing guidelines).
Director of environment Mike Redman explained that it is still appropriate at this time to limit numbers in public spaces, while ensuring the requisite social distancing measures.
“Our risk assessments are under regular review and we take a number of factors into account, including the availability of staff, the ability to safely maintain and enforce the two-metre social distancing requirements, compassion for the bereaved and the impact increased attendance is likely to have on the continued health, safety and welfare of all those attending, managing and officiating at funerals,” he went on to say.
Funerals will also be permitted in churches once again from June 15th, with draft guidance on how churches can receive people safely published last week.
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