Hendon Crematorium announces plans to remove tatty memorial benches

Unkempt memorial benches to be destroyed

Unkempt memorial benches to be destroyed

First published in News
Last updated
Times Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A crematorium has said that benches believed to be "abandoned" will be removed unless the owners come forward.

Relatives of people commemorated on the seats at Hendon Crematorium in Holders Hill Road have been given two months' notice to claim them.

Barnet Borough Council claims many of the benches breach health and safety regulations as they are broken, have mould growing from them or are in a state of disrepair.

Those in a good condition will be kept in storage until the owner comes forward to collect them.

So far, 90 per cent of benches have been claimed.

Memorials manager David Aspiris said: “We are concerned some people might visit once a year on anniversaries so we’re making a note of that and keeping the benches in good condition safe.

“We can’t say how long they’ll be kept for – I’ve got absolutely no idea – it depends on how much storage we’ve got.

“But those which aren’t maintained are clearly not safe, and if something happens health and safety wise, it will be on our shoulders.”

To claim a bench, call 020 8359 3370.

Comments (7)

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12:57pm Fri 2 May 14

Mrs Angry, Broken Barnet blog says...

This is an absolutely appalling story: now that Capita has its hands on Hendon Crematorium, this company is beginning to do exactly what we predicted - show gross lack of sensitivity in the management of what is a place of deep personal significance to me and so many residents. Capita plans to make big profits from the Crematorium, and to designate the grounds as an open space. It's all in the contract your Tory councillors signed: don't say you haven't been warned.
This is an absolutely appalling story: now that Capita has its hands on Hendon Crematorium, this company is beginning to do exactly what we predicted - show gross lack of sensitivity in the management of what is a place of deep personal significance to me and so many residents. Capita plans to make big profits from the Crematorium, and to designate the grounds as an open space. It's all in the contract your Tory councillors signed: don't say you haven't been warned. Mrs Angry, Broken Barnet blog
  • Score: 16

2:36pm Fri 2 May 14

Rog T says...

Do the Barnet Times have no sense of sensitivity anymore. These are not "abandoned benches". These are benches paid for by generous members of the public and left with the agreement of the cemetry owners in memorial of their loved ones. The reason they may be in a state of disrepair is because this council has not maintaned them. They have made this scandalous announcement presumably because the council has outsourced the running of the cemetary to Capita, who have figured out they can make more money if they throw the generosity of the benefactors back in their face. It is incredible that the Times have simply taken this announcement at face value without thinking about it.

Just think it through. Many elderly people visit partners, parents, children and need somewhere near their loved ones to take a rest. Getting rid of these benches show that Capita ar eputting profit before the needs of the service user.

The Times should completely rewrite this horrible article.
Do the Barnet Times have no sense of sensitivity anymore. These are not "abandoned benches". These are benches paid for by generous members of the public and left with the agreement of the cemetry owners in memorial of their loved ones. The reason they may be in a state of disrepair is because this council has not maintaned them. They have made this scandalous announcement presumably because the council has outsourced the running of the cemetary to Capita, who have figured out they can make more money if they throw the generosity of the benefactors back in their face. It is incredible that the Times have simply taken this announcement at face value without thinking about it. Just think it through. Many elderly people visit partners, parents, children and need somewhere near their loved ones to take a rest. Getting rid of these benches show that Capita ar eputting profit before the needs of the service user. The Times should completely rewrite this horrible article. Rog T
  • Score: 11

3:16pm Fri 2 May 14

abarnetboy says...

There is a packet to me made from selling benches.

The are £867 if the council supply it. What does a good 6' bench cost? Well the price varies with the quality but £300 to £400 looks to buy a teak bench which would last for many years.

http://www.hayesgard
enworld.co.uk/catego
ry/garden/garden-ben
ches/teak-garden-ben
ches
There is a packet to me made from selling benches. The are £867 if the council supply it. What does a good 6' bench cost? Well the price varies with the quality but £300 to £400 looks to buy a teak bench which would last for many years. http://www.hayesgard enworld.co.uk/catego ry/garden/garden-ben ches/teak-garden-ben ches abarnetboy
  • Score: 1

7:54pm Fri 2 May 14

Mr Reasonable says...

Every Conservative councillor should hang their head in shame. It was quite clear from the outset that giving control of a cemetery to Capita would unleash the amoral and entire money focused management on a place special to local residents. This is the first consequence and there will be many more.
Every Conservative councillor should hang their head in shame. It was quite clear from the outset that giving control of a cemetery to Capita would unleash the amoral and entire money focused management on a place special to local residents. This is the first consequence and there will be many more. Mr Reasonable
  • Score: 11

8:14pm Fri 2 May 14

You don't fool me says...

Although it is of little consolation to the families of the departed, we will punish the CONselfservatives in the next elections.
Although it is of little consolation to the families of the departed, we will punish the CONselfservatives in the next elections. You don't fool me
  • Score: 8

8:00am Wed 7 May 14

Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault says...

People are letting emotion and an anti council mindset get in the way of what is a sensible and overdue action. People should not be making a donation of property which needs ongoing maintenance and expect that cost to be met indefinitely. It seems to me capita are doing their best to contact people and manage a sensitive situation but the usual complainers will think differently! Roll on the diatribe!.....
People are letting emotion and an anti council mindset get in the way of what is a sensible and overdue action. People should not be making a donation of property which needs ongoing maintenance and expect that cost to be met indefinitely. It seems to me capita are doing their best to contact people and manage a sensitive situation but the usual complainers will think differently! Roll on the diatribe!..... Mr unreasonable and always looking for fault
  • Score: -9

5:40pm Wed 7 May 14

You don't fool me says...

Roll on the Local elections when Conservative councillors get well and truly hammered.
Roll on the Local elections when Conservative councillors get well and truly hammered. You don't fool me
  • Score: 5

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