Cost of living crisis: Sheffield Council increases fees for burials, cremations and memorials

Sheffield Council has increased its fees for burials, cremations and memorials by four percent to help offset the increases in energy prices rocketing.

Thursday, 16th June 2022, 1:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 16th June 2022, 1:10 pm
Sheffield General Cemetery.
Sheffield General Cemetery.

Around 3,000 cremations and 850 burials take place across the council’s 16 cemeteries and two crematoriums every year.

In a report on the changes to costs, council officers said: “The council strives to mitigate cost inflation by keeping overheads as low as possible and providing services more efficiently.

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“However, the council does have to seek to recover such increases through adjusting prices where it is not possible to reduce overheads and deliver efficiencies to match the rate of inflation.

“To offset budget pressures, for example increased cost of supplies, fuel, machinery etc. the actual percentage increase needed through income to offset budget pressures.”

The council said it has not done any consultation on the increases, saying it was not required to do so, and admitted its service was more expensive than others in the region.

Officers and councillors discussed the report in a meeting of the communities, parks and leisure committee this week.

Councillor Karen McGowan said the increase in fees made her feel uncomfortable when the price of everything was rocketing due to the cost of living crisis and questioned what support there was for people who cannot afford it.

In reply, Ellie Fraser, service manager for bereavement services, said the council could not offer payment plans.

She did not say there was any support available from the council but said financial support was available via government benefits.