Call for Glenrothes to get its own cemetery

© DC ThomsonLinda Ballingall has called for a cemetery in Glenrothes
Linda Ballingall has called for a cemetery in Glenrothes

Calls have been made for one of Scotland’s foremost post-war towns to finally be given its own cemetery.

The former New Town of Glenrothes, which celebrated its 70th anniversary in 2018, is now one of the last settlements in Scotland to have no burial facilities, with East Kilbride, Irvine and Cumbernauld all having their own cemeteries.

For decades Glenrothes families have to use neighbouring Kirkcaldy crematorium, or nearby cemeteries at Markinch, Leslie or Kinglassie.

Now, resident and former Glenrothes Development Corporation employee, Linda Ballingall are calling for the town to be given a designated place within its boundary for people who want to be laid to rest in the town where they live.

“It’s inconceivable given the size of this town, that when the inevitable happens, families have the awkward decision of where to send their loved ones because Glenrothes still doesn’t have its own cemetery,” said Linda.

“With the population now in excess of 50,000, you have lots of people who have lived their entire lives in Glenrothes yet still have no option of being laid to rest in the place that is their home.

“It’s extremely disappointing given that I’ve spent my entire adult life working and campaigning on behalf of Glenrothes, that when the time comes – and I hope that is some way off yet – I will not remain here after my death.”

Linda said the town had ample green space in which a cemetery could be sited and has  urged the council to seriously consider the option.

She said: “There’s vacant land in parts of north, west and south Genrothes which are all suitable, it’s time Glenrothes got the cemetery it now needs.”

Under the Scottish Government’s Burials and Cremations (Scotland) Act 2016, which replaced the outdated Burial Grounds (Scotland) Act of 1855, local authorities now have the power to create new cemetery areas if deemed necessary.

Responding to the call, Alan Paul, Fife Council’s senior manager for property services, said: “There aren’t any current proposals to take forward a cemetery in Glenrothes.

“Glenrothes isn’t the only new town without a cemetery and in the case of Glenrothes, there are cemeteries located nearby at Leslie and Markinch.

“However, we aim to meet people’s burial wishes and help meet the funeral needs of all our local people.

“Should there be a demand for a local cemetery for the people of Glenrothes, this request would be seriously considered.

“This would also have to be agreed by members.”