Monday, 26 July 2010

The Grave's A Fine And Private Place...

...but it's not very green, is it?
Drainage problems and demand outstripping the supply of land have led council bosses to step up the search for a new graveyard site.

Recent wet winters and an ageing population mean Snell Hatch Cemetery will soon be fully occupied.
Oh dear. What to do?
The options are to either allocate a number of small sites which could serve the community for the next 50 years, find a site close to the existing crematorium or work with surrounding authorities.

A woodland burial site is also being investigated as a possible solution.

Woodland burials, also known as "green" or "natural" burials, are becoming increasingly popular with sites provided by both Brighton and Hove and Hastings Councils.
Yes, land is at a premium, and the green enthusists are plugging the alternative of 'green' burials. It's a problem for councils. And for people. Still, at least it's one we all share equally, regardless of race or creed or...

Oh. Oh dear:
The Daily Telegraph (print edition) reports that a council-run graveyard is selling Muslim burial plots more than £500 cheaper than those for non-Muslims, to the anger of local residents.
Huh..?

Wittering From Whitney reports that the council's excuse for this is that 'Muslims allow only one person to be buried in a grave, while people of other religions can use it for 'more than one person'...'

In which case, since we're all supposed to be doing our bit for Gaia, shouldn't they be charged more?

*fetches popcorn, waits for the fun to start*

23 comments:

sobers said...

Ignoring the obvious breach of rules on Religious Discrimination, what is to stop anyone saying they are a Muslim when buying one? Will there be a religious test to check if you really are a Muslim? What if you were a Muslim when you bought it, but converted to Bhuddism afterwards? What if you are buying a plot for your already deceased relative, and claim they were a Muslim? The council could hardly check up on that could they?

David Gillies said...

The roppers are taking the piss. If there's a reckoning some day it's going to be unpleasant.

banned said...

Christians should be given BOGOF deals for multiple occupation of graves.

allcoppedout said...

If I refuse to occupy any grave or to undergo cremation on religious grounds, what will they do with me?

Dave H said...

...put you in the green bin. The local council say you can put 'meat and bones' it.

English Viking said...

sobers,

The problem with your plan is that it would mean that your final resting place would place in the middle of a load of muslims.

Upstairs for thinking, downstairs for dancing!

Curmudgeon said...

Surely an ageing population would reduce the demand for graves...

Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

?roppers?

Indyanhat said...

Brian;
perhaps,
religiously oppressed people practicing earthly rebellion,
or,
radicalised opponents permanently preaching eastern recidivism,
or,
ramadan over please pass everyones rations,
or,
recently opened perpendicular planting eases resources

otherwise i have no idea either!!!

JuliaM said...

'ROP' = 'Religion of Peace'.. ;)

Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

Thank you. I am informed and amused.

Anonymous said...

This is another weaselly ploy for buttering up the muslims and giving them a sneaky subsidy, at everyone else's expense.

It's not rocket science. You set a price for the plot, which is a fixed price. Then you set a price for interrment, which reflects the cost of paying the gravediggers.

Otherwise it's like going into a supermarket, and having to pay a surcharge on your cheese because you keep it in the freezer and none gets wasted.

This differential tariff is discriminatory, and should be challenged in the courts. There should be no price differential whatsoever.

Monty

Quiet_Man said...

It costs less to bury 2 people in the same grave (apparently you get a discount) however that doesn't quite explain why roppers get a single person discount, it's exactly the same amount of work to dig.

Woman on a Raft said...

Pass popcorn, thanks.

But the council has explained the price difference relates to the number of people who can be buried in each grave.

Head of bereavement services Kevin Pilkington said: "The difference between the plots is that the Muslim graves are only used for one burial, whereas the other graves can be used for up to three people and for cremated remains.

"In the general area, £2,927 buys someone exclusive rights to that plot for 50 years."

It works out that a family who bury three relatives in the Muslim area will pay £9,807 – which works out at three plots at £2,383 plus a fee of £886 for burying each person.

But a family burying the same number of people in the general area will only pay £5,872 – which is made up of £2,927 for the plot, £1.173 to bury the first relative and £886 each for the other two."


I haven't yet rung Bereavement Services Kevin Pilkington to find out if someone can insist on buying a single plot in the general area for exactly the same price as the Council charges the Muslims, but perhaps somebody ought to point out that the council's current arrangement of offering ground on different terms according to faith may not get them out of trouble on the matter of discrimination.

Is Croydon saying that Muslims are allowed single-occupation plots but nobody else is? Who is Croydon to decide how many people are allowed to share an eternal resting spot in my religion? Why does the spreadsheet only list a special area for the Muslims? They aren't the only people with a religion.

And what's this about buying rights in threes, when you might only want one.

Unfortunately, the Croydon spreadsheet needs someone like Mark Wadsworth to understand it. I hope I've abstracted it correctly. It's fair enough to charge extra for people outside the borough, but why do those charges vary with faith?

NEW GRAVES - GREENLAWNS MEMORIAL PARK
Grave – Muslim
Current 2,292.00
Proposed 2,383.00

Muslim Grave – Non Resident Supplement
Current 1,296.00
Proposed 1,361.00

Grave – General (Border or Non – border)
Current 2,820.00
Proposed 2,927.00

Non-resident supplement for General grave purchase current 1,627.00
Proposed 1,708.00

I might have abstracted the data wrongly. It is on a downloadable Excel. The Bereavement services are on the seventh tab - click through them at the bottom for anyone who doesn't use Excel very often.

http://www.croydon.gov.uk/contents/departments/democracy/xls/CS201011FeesCharges.xls

Woman on a Raft said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Woman on a Raft said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Woman on a Raft said...

Deleted due to Blogger st-st-stuttering.

Fascist Hippy said...

People wanting to be buried are far too up themselves and obsessed with their own importance, each individual takes up enough space on this tiny planet when they are alive let alone wanting a permanent space for all time when they are dead, you will be gone goodbye, end ex!

blueknight said...

Not as green as Solyent Green?
(Anyone under 50 will have to google it)

Macheath said...

'Muslims allow only one person to be buried in a grave, while people of other religions can use it for 'more than one person'...'

The grave's a fine and private place,
They told me none would there embrace;
That may be true for Muslims there,
The rest of us will have to share.
(with apologies to Andrew Marvell - great title, JuliaM)

JuliaM said...

"Will there be a religious test to check if you really are a Muslim? "

"Do come in, Mrs Mahmood. Sausage roll? No? How about a small sherry, then?"

"If I refuse to occupy any grave or to undergo cremation on religious grounds, what will they do with me?"

Well, they're a bureacracy. They'll probably reclassify you as 'alive' in the council records! :)

"This differential tariff is discriminatory, and should be challenged in the courts."

Yup! As WoaR points out, it's unlikely to survive such a challenge.

"Deleted due to Blogger st-st-stuttering."

No worries. It's been happening a lot lately.

"...each individual takes up enough space on this tiny planet when they are alive let alone wanting a permanent space for all time when they are dead..."

I hate to burst your bubble, but it's not permanent. You rot. As do all things.

"Not as green as Solyent Green?
(Anyone under 50 will have to google it)"


Heh! Not anyone under 50 who buys their t-shirts here, though... :D

"The grave's a fine and private place,
They told me none would there embrace;
That may be true for Muslims there,
The rest of us will have to share.
(with apologies to Andrew Marvell - great title, JuliaM)"


/applause :D

PT Barnum said...

"Muslim Grave – Non Resident Supplement
...
Grave – General (Border or Non – border)"

I know what they're trying to describe with these classifications, but it does suggest something a bit disturbing when we're talking graves.

Mark Wadsworth said...

I'm a land value taxer, they ought to charge for grave spaces on the same basis as anything else - if demand outstrips supply then just hike the price.