Agenda and minutes

Greater Gwent Cremation Joint Committee - Wednesday, 11th September, 2019 2.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 4 - Civic Centre. View directions

Contact: Meryl James, Governance Officer 

No. Item


Declarations of Interest




Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 79 KB


The Minutes of the meeting held on the 12th June 2019 were accepted as a true and accurate record



Amendments to the Annual Accounts Return pdf icon PDF 97 KB

Additional documents:


J Hazelwood addressed the Committee regarding the amendment to the Independent Examination of the 2018/19 Annual Return letter from the Wales Audit Office, advising the Committee that the table on page 9 had amendements in box 8 and 10. The Chair and M Rushworth signed for re-approval.


Budget Monitoring Report pdf icon PDF 69 KB


When Newport put forward an MTRP proposal, and the subsequent fee increase of 12.5% from April 2019, it was expected that cremation numbers would remain the same, and we would achieve additional income levels of £200k, making the total distribution £950k, however due to decreased cremations, the additional income looks unachievable, and therefore it’s been suggested that the distribution for this financial year, remains at the level of £750k.   The Head of Finance has suggested that we need to have a plan to improve the service we provide, and we will review the financial position at the end of the year, when we have a better understanding of income levels.


The Chair addressed the condition of the Crematorium, asking the Committee for their feedback on modernising and updating the building, as the new Crematorium in Langstone is still modern and fresh, as would the new Crematorium in Pontllanfraith once built next year.  The Committee felt that it was important to strive to keep up with the competitors, agreeing that the interactive facilities the other Crematoriums have are important for Gwent to achieve as the Committee felt that without the interactive facilities business could be lost to other Crematoriums in the area.


The Chair asked K Donovan of Norse to compile a report for the next meeting outlining potential areas for updates and improvements, M Rushworth asked if we could also get similar feedback from Funeral Directors.



Facilities Management

To receive an oral update from the Newport Norse representative


K Donovan reported that the flowerbed area has now been completed.

The Chair, Councillor R Jeavons requested that K Donovan and P Dundon meet and work together on input for the report.


Funeral Director's Report

To consider any issues raised by local Funeral Directors


Nothing to report


Stake Holder Meetings


S Toms has requested that a bi-annual Stakeholder meeting take place to include Funeral Directors and Clergy. This meeting would act as a steering group to discuss issues.


Manager's Report






In the past 28 days to date, there have been approximately 12000 views of the

Crematorium web pages.






The renewal of leases for memorial vaults will start to become due in the next couple of months, which will have a positive effect on revenue.






*Figures marked with an asterisk are at times with reduced service provision due to the installation of mercury abatement plant.


The cremation totals for the first 5 months of the calendar year are 164 lower than in 2018. Whilst there are clear revenue implications, the lead-in time for funerals is considerably lower, which has positive effects on the public perception of the service.





The major works to replace the external flues from the cremators and to renew lagging on the flues were completed on schedule on 281h June. There was no disruption to any funeral service during that time by noise, etc.




The crematorium has been awarded a gold award under the ICCM Charter for the Bereaved Accreditation Scheme. We have previously only achieved silver status, mainly because only 20 minute service times are offered, although our benchmarking score was only under the gold level by a couple of points. However, we are now getting recognition for our drive to stop using plastics in the cremation process.





Following our success in being awarded a gold award and first prize in the Public

Buildings category last year, we are awaiting this year's results in early September



Date of next meeting:  4th December 2019 at 2pm in Committee room 4.