Plea for help to care for town’s cemetery

Simon Parkes, John Freeman and Sean Rixham Smith at Whitby Cemetery''w131221a
Simon Parkes, John Freeman and Sean Rixham Smith at Whitby Cemetery''w131221a

A public meeting will be held next month to discuss whether Whitby Town Council should take over the running of Larpool Cemetery.

Coun Simon Parkes is urging anyone with an interest in the cemetery to attend a meeting which will be held at Whitby Coliseum on Monday 8 April at 7pm.

Officers from Scarborough Borough Council , who currently maintain the resting place, will be present and it is hoped that those who attend can discuss the formation of a Friends of Whitby Cemetery group.

Whitby Town Council has already agreed that it would like to take over the running of the cemetery after concerns were raised about its upkeep. This would include maintenance and burials, should Scarborough Borough Council agree.

Councillors Simon Parkes, Sean Rixham-Smith and Whitby mayor John Freeman have been pushing for a meeting to take place.

Coun Parkes said: “We’ve got to know what the support is. If the support is there, we’ve got a good chance of making this happen.

“It’s a public meeting, not a committee meeting so if anyone has any loved ones laid to rest there, they need to put their point of view across.

“We are trying to do what the people want. The people have asked us to do something now.

“We need the people to throw their support behind us.”

Coun Parkes added he was keen for people to take part in the meeting positively by looking to the future and not the past as it was not about attacking the borough council on its care of the resting place.

“This is about how we move forward. The council officers are coming to help us.”

Coun John Freeman added: “I think it’s a good thing for Whitby and I know our town clerk has had experience of running cemeteries before.

“I think the closer the town is involved in the running and caring of the cemetery the better. I think it’s something we could all work at and be successful with.”