Plan for new florist at South Shields Crematorium gets the go-ahead despite objection

Funeral flowers will soon be for sale at South Tyneside’s crematorium after council chiefs approved plans to build a florists in its grounds.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 2nd July 2019, 11:45 am
Updated Tuesday, 2nd July 2019, 2:54 pm
South Shields Crematorium.
South Shields Crematorium.

They say the scheme – to provide last minute bouquets for mourners, and opposed in writing by a sole borough resident – are in keeping with the site’s purpose.

In giving the green light, planners insist the outlet’s out-of-town position does not clash with stated policy of keeping businesses within main shopping centres.

And they claim it is intended only to attract sales from family and friends attended funerals – although they concede they cannot prevent passing trade.

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Just one person raised concerns to criticise South Tyneside Council’s proposal for the John Reid Road site, in South Shields.

They claimed it was banishing competition, preying on a captive audience and being nepotistic if one of its employees was put in charge.

But this was rejected on the grounds that local florists had been approached to operate the business - and one had agreed to do so.

A council spokeswoman said: “The approval of our planning application will allow us to consider the next steps for this site.”

The proposed 22 sqm detached outlet, which will have 18 sqm of floorspace, will be built in what is currently open ground close to the car park.

Standing about 40m back from the entrance gate, it will be clearly visible to people driving into the crematorium grounds.

The council, which describes the development as a ‘garden room’, plans for its front to face trees on the east side of a path between the car park and memorial garden.

It says the rear of the lodge, which will have one full-time and two part-time staff members, will be sympathetically positioned so as not to disturb funerals.

To erect it, conifers which line the east side of the path from the car park to the memorial garden, and a small wall, will be removed.

It can trade from 8.30am to 4pm between Monday and Saturday, and from 9am to 3pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays.