The cost of dying in Leeds rises as cuts bite

BEREAVED families in Leeds are facing up to the prospect of paying more for their loved ones to be laid to rest.

Wednesday, 6th April 2016, 5:00 am
Beckett Street cemetery in Leeds.

Leeds City Council introduced a four per cent increase in charges for bereavement services at the start of this month.

Revised prices include £758 for an adult cremation and £2,694 for burial in a woodland grave.

The introduction of the new charges will bring in an extra £243,000 for the cash-strapped local authority.

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An internal council report outlining the reasons for the increase says: “The focus remains on providing the best possible standards of service, which includes not only the maintenance of our 24 cemeteries but the ongoing aim of ensuring the long-term needs of the city for burials and cremations are met.

“This includes the development and laying out of new cemeteries and the extensive refurbishment and modernisation of both Rawdon and Cottingley crematoria.”

The same report also compares charges in Leeds to other major cities in West Yorkshire and the rest of the country.

It says: “Whilst it is acknowledged that Leeds has the highest memorialisation fee, it is difficult to make a true like for like comparison as each [council] sets its budget differently and also offer a wider selection of available options.

“For example, Sheffield’s new right of burial is for a 30 year term as opposed to that in Leeds where it is 50 years.”

Leeds City Council handles more than 5,000 cremations and 1,000 burials each year, according to latest figures.