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Crematorium reference ditched after Plean Country Park furore

Published by in English ·

FEARS that a crematorium could be sited at Plean Country Park led to outcry from the public.

And one councillor said it would happen “over my dead body”.

Ward councillor Alasdair Macpherson said he had been inundated with calls from locals after the Stirling Observer carried a story about a masterplan for the park which included a potential crematorium within its boundaries.

The 10-year masterplan suggests improved access, a visitor centre, children’s play area, improved signage and footpaths and a mountain bike trail.

However, consultants also included among their key proposals “further consideration of the potential for a crematorium to be sited within the park”, creating local outcry.

At last Thursday’s meeting of the council’s executive Councillor Macpherson said: “I have some real concerns. My phone was red hot after people read the story in the Stirling Observer, which highlighted the mention of a crematorium.

“It would be over my dead body. It created a lot of concern.

“I know this has been mentioned in the past and is an option the council has looked at previously. As far as I am concerned it should be removed from the report.

“The Plean people really do think they are getting a raw deal on this.

“Plean Community Council are said to have been consulted. This has been a long process but they didn’t make a final submission into it, albeit because of workload. They are, after all, volunteers and many of them are also involved in other local groups and organisations.

“I didn’t see mention of a crematorium in the Kings Park masterplan.

“The basis of concern locally is the crematorium. I’d be happy to take any reference to it out to get the masterplan approved because otherwise this is a great opportunity for Plean.”

Councillor Jim Thomson said: “I’m disappointed that officers have produced a fantastic piece of work and this is the only thing being raised.

“I don’t believe this is the best location for a crematorium. Why would anyone want to go to Plean when 15 minutes down the road there’s a crematorium in Falkirk?”

Council officials said: “What’s different is the scale of potential development which may or may not occur in Plean.

“As part of the consultant’s brief we made reference to a study on the potential for crematorium somewhere in Stirling that lies on the shelf. There also may or may not be developments on Durieshill and Pleanbank.

“It would have been remiss not to have taken cognisance of factors like this in a 10- year masterplan.

“The community council have been kept in the loop and invited to consultation events. We would be happy to listen to their concerns and desires for the park. The masterplan was agreed as a final document six weeks ago but we do recognise the need to take the local community with us on this.”

Council leader Graham Houston said: “A lot of community disquiet has perhaps been raised for no real purpose.

“This masterplan doesn’t commit us to do anything but there clearly now exists in the community’s mind a great deal of concern so we have to acknowledge that, albeit that it may be misplaced because of aspects of the reporting of it.

“I don’t think anyone round this table believes a crematorium should be in there.

“I think this one little aspect has caused concern and if we take that away this could be a paper that is very much welcomed by the wider community.”

The executive approved the masterplan after agreeing to remove any reference to a crematorium.




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