RESIDENTS are trying to block a graveyard extension.
St Nicholas’s Church in Upper Cumberworth has asked Kirklees Council for permission to expand its cemetery on to land which has been used as gardens for nearly 50 years.
The council’s Heavy Woollen Planning Sub-committee will decide next month if the church can begin burials on the land behind 17 to 41 Hollybank Avenue.
The church bought the 130m by 20m plot in 1964 for future cemetery use.
The land was leased at peppercorn rent to homeowners at Hollybank Avenue, allowing them to extend their gardens.
But the church has asked to be allowed to take the land back to give more room for burials.
Thirteen residents have written to Kirklees objecting to the plan.
Their complaints include:
The extended graveyard would be very close to their homes
Burials on the land could lead to pollution and release of toxins
The proposal would lead to loss of privacy.
The council’s Heavy Woollen Planning Sub-committee will rule on the proposal at its monthly meeting at Dewsbury Town Hall from 1pm on Thursday January 5.
Clr Jim Dodds asked the sub-committee to consider the planning application because of the opposition from residents.
The Denby Dale Conservative said: “The graveyard is above their gardens and the close proximity could be a problem.
“There’s a possibility that there could be a funeral taking place two or three yards from a family having a barbecue on a Saturday afternoon.
“I will go to the planning meeting and speak on the residents’ behalf and I’m sure some of the residents will come as well.”
But Clr Dodds admitted there was little chance of blocking the graveyard extension.
“The church is well within its rights,” he said.
“It’s their land, they have rented it out for years and now they are asking for it to be handed back to them.”
Clr Dodds added that the church needed more room for burials.
“The graveyard is almost full, I think there may be only one or two plots left,” he said.