Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Aspen Chapel, North Devon Crematorium

No. Item


Appointment of Chairman 2021/22 (North Devon Council Member)


RESOLVED that Councillor Walker be appointed Chair of the Joint Committee until re-appointments are made in the next municipal year.



Apologies for Absence.


Apologies were received from Councillors Davis and Y. Gubb.




Appointment of Vice Chairman 2021/22 (Torridge DC Member)


RESOLVED that Councillor Christie be appointed Vice Chair of the Joint Committee until re-appointments are made in the next municipal year.



To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 5th February 2021. pdf icon PDF 208 KB

(a)       Matters Arising



(i)         RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 5th February 2021 (previously circulated) be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


(ii)        Matters Arising – There were no matters arising



Items brought forward which, in the opinion of the Chairman, should be considered by the meeting as a matter of urgency.


Declarations of Interest.


There were no declarations of interest declared.



To agree the agenda between Part 'A' and Part 'B' (Confidential Restricted Information)


Crematorium Matters - Report by the Crematorium Manager pdf icon PDF 232 KB


The Joint Committee considered a report by the Crematorium Manager (previously circulated).



i)          Covid Crisis Update


It was noted:


That on 17th May the number of mourners permitted was increased to 50 following the removal of the legislated 30-limit and a risk assessment of the chapel.

On June 21st it was anticipated that all legal & social distancing

restrictions/requirements would be lifted. To help the transition, initially only the Rowan Chapel would be in use.

If that were the case, seating would probably increase to 160 which retained slightly enhanced spacing. Use of on-screen hymn lyrics would be retained to reduce need for staff to touch shared items as would hand sanitizing equipment in all mourner and staff facilities. All other restrictions would be lifted. The seating capacity would be reviewed once any winter spike in Covid-19 had been considered.


ii)         Achievements


It was noted:


That an electrostatic sprayer had been deployed after each service since early March (kills viruses within 1 minute). This reduced the need for staff to manually wipe surfaces and enhanced coverage.


That the following software enhancements for service users had been

purchased & were awaiting implementation:

  • Public access to search for service dates/times via the internet (not private services).
  • Automatic email confirmation of service bookings/changes to Funeral Directors.

That a shipping container had been rented (on-site) to cover storage shortage pending the re-building of garages.


iii)        Staffing


It was noted:


That the second temporary part-time gardener post had been in place for over 2-years which afforded full employment protection rights to the current staff-member, the Lead Gardener was on long term sick leave due to

personal family issues and the part-time Bereavement Administrator had also



The Crematorium Manager stated that there was leeway within the budget to buy in additional staffing services if required to cover the staff shortfall.


It was agreed:


A)        That, the aforementioned temporary part-time gardener post be made a permanent post and the position advertised.

B)        That the Committees condolences be sent to the Lead Gardener.

C)        That the part-time Bereavement Administrator position be advertised.


iv)        Metals Recycling Charity Award


It was noted:


That Clarity had been awarded £10,000 (paid direct December 2020). The ‘formal cheque presentation’ had not yet taken place and that the Calvert Trust (Exmoor) had been proposed for the next award (due June 2021).


The subsequent nomination list was:


Over and Above (Cancer & Wellbeing Centre)

Families in Grief

North Devon Children’s Holiday Foundation

North Devon Hospice


Children’s Hospice SW

Over and Above (North Devon Hospital – Maternity Unit Bereavement Suite)


Calvert Trust


That no further additions to be considered prior to February 2022.


v)         Crematorium Figures


The Cremation figures were noted.


vi)        Garden Improvements 2020/21


It was noted:


That the car-park hedge had been laid aesthetically and with regard to its future maintenance. It was an enhancement and enabled the provision of a footpath by DCC to serve the 200 new homes adjacent to the crematorium.


The bulk materials area in the carpark  ...  view the full minutes text for item 45.


Outturn 2020/21. Report by Treasurer pdf icon PDF 159 KB


The Joint Committee considered a report by the Treasurer (previously circulated) regarding the outturn figures for 2020/2021.




i)          That the Outturn report 2020/21 be noted.


ii)         That the reserves and balances outlined in paragraph 3.4 of the report be approved.



To note that the next Crematorium Joint Committee meeting will be on Friday 6th August 2021 @ 2.30 p.m.