Felixstowe cemetery signs misery
MOURNERS have been left distressed after failing to find Felixstowe's cemetery – and ending up late for burial ceremonies.Undertakers have told councillors that the lack of signs in the town has caused anguish to grieving relatives who have got lost in the town's estates as they travelled to the civic graveyard.
By Richard Cornwell
MOURNERS have been left distressed after failing to find Felixstowe's cemetery – and ending up late for burial ceremonies.
Undertakers have told councillors that the lack of signs in the town has caused anguish to grieving relatives who have got lost in the town's estates as they travelled to the civic graveyard.
Now councillors have taken up the funeral directors' concerns and come up with an idea which might help visitors unfamiliar with many places in the town – mini-TIC centres in laybys on the way in to the resort.
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Town clerk Susan Robinson said the funeral directors had suggested five sites where they would like signs pointing to the cemetery in Langley Avenue – which is reached by car from Grange Road – starting from the edge of town.
Most burials were now urn burials and people did not go straight from the service together to such an event, but usually attended a few days later.
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Members of the finance and general purposes committee though were split over whether signs were a good idea as efforts had been made in recent years to cut the distracting and unsightly proliferation of signs.
Councillor Dennis Carpenter accepted that there was a problem with adding more signs to the road network but felt the cemetery was a "special case" as people often came from outside the town.
"People are emotionally upset and they want to be able to find the cemetery as easily as possible and we should help them do that," he said.
Councillor Mike Goodman suggested that instead of signs, street maps featuring all the churches, the cemetery, shopping area, car parks, attractions, and so on, could be placed in laybys on the approaches to the town.
"It is quite common in the United States and on the Continent that as you approach the town, you pull over into a layby and get all the information and directions you need from a map and sort yourselves out," he said
Councillor Andy Smith pointed out that many organisations had been refused direction signs recently – including churches, businesses, sports facilities, tourist attractions among them – but believed the layby mini-Tourist Information Centre facility should be "enthusiastically pursued".
It was agreed to liaise with Suffolk County Council's highways department and Suffolk Coastal over possible boards in laybys in Candlet Road and on the A14 Port of Felixstowe Road.
The town council would also produce a leaflet showing the cemetery's location which could be available at churches, crematorium and the library for reference.