RED-FACED burial bosses have done a U-turn on late fees for funerals after the Examiner exposed their scheme.
On Wednesday we highlighted how Bereavement Services chiefs planned to charge funeral directors £100 for every 15 minutes they were late to cemeteries for burials.
The council said if funeral directors were late it made council burial staff late for their next engagements which upset mourners.
But funeral directors hit back blasting the council for its `short-sighted' policies saying the costs would have to be passed on to customers.
Funeral director Paul McNulty said he was very angry at the proposed charges and had contacted the council.
He added: "We have a partnership with the council and we had no idea of the plan to bring in fines for funerals that were delayed.
"The late fines of £100 for 15 minutes are out of order and I have told the council of our feelings.
"They simply do not think things through. We could have a situation where we would have to cut short services to meet deadlines and that would cause real upset."
Mr McNulty said that as part of their agreement with the council, fees would rise by no more than 5%. He added: "Some fees have gone up by 9.5% but the council have agreed to look at this and we will have further discussions."
A council spokesman said: "Proposals to introduce an additional charge to funeral directors where services run excessively late have been shelved.
"The council intends to have fuller consultation and discussion on the issue with funeral directors through the Bereavement Services Partnership.
"Funerals running late can cause problems where other funerals are scheduled to follow.
"It is important to try and ensure that funerals do run to time to avoid possible distress and inconvenience to all concerned.
"Ways of achieving that will be central to the discussions."