And finally… Planning permission granted for Scotland’s first columbarium

columbariumThe first columbarium of its kind in Scotland will be created in a Fife village.

The vault for funeral urns will be part of a woodland eco-cemetery to be constructed in Kinghorn. Only three others exist in the UK.

To be carved into the landscape on the banks of Kinghorn Loch, the columbarium was given planning consent by Fife Council alongside the Kingdom’s first eco-cemetery.

Based on an Iron Age barrow burial chamber, the project could provide an underground repository for ashes between a tranquil loch and a rural ecology centre.

A drive is now on to raise funds for the pioneering project, which will be undertaken as a not-for-profit enterprise by Kinghorn Community Land Association (KCLA).

The multi-faith cemetery and columbarium, designed by Edinburgh-based architects Simpson and Brown, will be built on part of 10 acres of land purchased on behalf of the community in 2015.

Richard Brewster, chairman of KCLA, told The Courier: “We are delighted to get planning permission for this unique place of remembrance.

“This is a real milestone for Kinghorn. The concept has really captured people’s imagination and this resulted in so much positive support from the public when the planning application was submitted.

“There is a real shortage of cemetery space locally and this will be somewhere special for people to lay loved ones to rest.

“The cemetery will develop into a natural woodland and peaceful remembrance space with a wildflower meadow and spectacular views over the Forth.

“The idea for the columbarium is based on an Iron Age barrow – a hollow mound with passages within it, with a central walled area somewhat like a broch, and a path that leads from the higher celebration platform.

“The next challenge for us will be to finalise the estimate of building costs, then to raise the money to make this vision a reality.”

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