‘Topping out’ ceremony marks important milestone at Cheltenham’s new crematorium

Published on 19th July 2018

men standing by half-built wall for new cemetery ceremony

A special event to mark the significant progress with the construction of Cheltenham’s new crematorium took place this week.

Cheltenham’s mayor, councillors, the project team including contractors Willmott Dixon, local media and other key partners gathered to see how the £8.5m crematorium is taking shape. Known as a ‘topping out’ ceremony, the event celebrated the structural completion of the building.

Picking up on the character of traditional Cotswold barns, the finished crematorium will appear as a series of connected buildings, utilising stone, slate and brick on the exterior. Inside, there will be two new chapels (ceremony rooms), the largest for 150 people seated and a smaller for 75 seated. Designed to be a welcoming place, the spaces will allow for lots of natural light, and controlled ventilation.

Due to open spring 2019, the new buildings will also contain a new crematory, much improved parking and staff facilities.

Councillor Chris Coleman, cabinet member for clean and green environment, said: ‘’It’s a huge step forward to get together with the project team and all those who have significantly contributed, to recognise the construction to date, which is on time and in budget.

‘’The new facilities, which are being created in a tranquil and beautiful environment, have been shaped by local people following their feedback during earlier consultations. We can now look ahead to the opening date of spring 2019.’’

Richard Jones, Director Willmott Dixon Wales and West, added:  “We have been delighted to be working with Cheltenham Borough Council here at the crematorium. We know how important this new facility is for Cheltenham and the positive impact it will have. The event this week marks a significant milestone in the build, and it is great to be able celebrate it with the council and local dignitaries. I look forward to continuing our work here, and seeing the completion of this new facility for the people of Cheltenham and surrounding area.’’

For media enquiries contact: Laura Carter, communications officer, email communications@cheltenham.gov.uk, telephone 01242 264154.