Cemetery space in Builth Wells 'running out'

St Mary The Virgin, Builth Wells About 800 people are buried in St Mary's churchyard

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A vicar has raised fears there will be no space to bury the dead in a Powys town by the end of the decade.

Rev Neil Hook of St Mary's Church in Builth Wells claims the 120 spaces left at the town's only cemetery will be filled "within five or six years".

About 20 people of all faiths are annually laid to rest in the 17th Century churchyard.

Rev Hook has asked the town council to consider ideas to resolve the problem.

St Mary's Church has the only graveyard in the former spa town and is surrounded on all sides by main roads.

Rev Hook fears that people may have to be buried in rural churches surrounding Builth Wells or the county council's municipal cemetery seven miles away in Llandrindod Wells after 2020.

"This is not a crisis and I don't want people to panic but we need to start the discussion on possible ideas for our graveyard when we run of out of space in five or six years," said Rev Hook.

"People with existing plots will still be buried with their loved ones but in five or six years time people buried in a single grave may not be buried with their loved ones.

"I'm not sure how the people of Builth Wells would react to being buried in the council cemetery in Llandrindod Wells."

Rev Hook has asked the town council to consult residents for ideas to resolve the problem.

The matter will be discussed by the town council at its next meeting on 11 February.

Avril York, a Powys county councillor representing Builth Wells, said: "There are other churchyards in the area with capacity but other possibilities in the town will be explored."

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