Carnbee Cemetery Extension

Carnbee Cemetery Extension There is a desire to consider a potential extension to the existing Carnbee Cemetery. There are 7 lairs remaining at the Cemetery...

Carnbee Cemetery Extension
There is a desire to consider a potential extension to the existing Carnbee
Cemetery. There are 7 lairs remaining at the Cemetery and based on current
estimates this should provide capacity for a further 14 years. (There is only an
interment of this type every 2 to 3 years.)
Due to the lead in time for bringing a new cemetery into operation a number of
options have been considered and for record purposes these are set out below.
1 – No Extension
Do not extend the existing Carbee Cemetery but continue to use it until it is full.
Once it is full burials will have to be arranged elsewhere, probably Pittenweem
and Anstruther.
Council comments: (positive)
 No need to buy additional land at Carnbee.
 Economy of scale elsewhere and greater efficiency.
 Modern layout and design with improved access.
 No expenditure required.
Council comments: (negative)
 Management issues at Carnbee.
 Does not satisfy local opinion.
 Capacity elsewhere may need to be increased.
Presbytery Comments:
 No comments received.
Community Council Comments: (negative)
 Local people have expressed an unwavering wish to be buried in
the cemetery of the community where they live and worship, and
where their families have been buried in the past.
Estate Comments:
 How and where we bury our dead is an important issue and one on
which, in relation to Carnbee, Balcaskie is in no position to make a
comment. It should be noted that elsewhere it appears to be common
ground that at some point burials will be restricted, with a strong
preference (or even an obligation being placed upon) using cremation
over burial. If the change to this policy is indeed only a matter of time,
then it is appropriate to ask when this change is likely to take place.
Whilst beneficial from the Council perspective this suggestion is not favoured by
the local community and if it is possible to provide additional burial capacity
within Carnbee this would be preferred.
2 – Extension to existing Cemetery
The potential to extend the existing Carbee Cemetery has been considered.
The land to the south of the existing cemetery is not considered suitable. This
leaves the land to the northwest as the only realistic choice.
Council comments: (positive)
 Area of additional land clearly identified and owner known.
 Continuity of burials at Carnbee.
 Relieves potential management issues at Carnbee.
 Satisfies local opinion.
 No impact on capacity elsewhere.
Council comments: (negative)
 Owner wishes wider dialogue with community, including an acceptance
of the loss of land by the Estate. (See Appendix 1 below.)
 Owner wishes to involve land owned by a third party (Presbytery) in the
overall deal.
 Possible use of Compulsory Powers required to ensure that ownership is
achieved by a set date.
 Finance required to purchase land and to lay out the cemetery extension.
 Access to the cemetery extension would be difficult.
Presbytery Comments:
 No comments received.
Community Council Comments: (positive)
 Echo all the Council’s positive comments
 Also seems a fitting arrangement given the Estate’s long historical
association with the church at Carnbee which until now the Estate
has always supported – eg. the donation of the window by the last
laird; the commemorative plaques to the Anstruther family inside
the church; the vast majority of those buried in the cemetery (or
hoping to be buried there) will have been Estate tenants or workers,
or otherwise associated with the Estate.
Estate Comments:
 “The land to the south to the south is not considered suitable” – it would
be helpful to understand on what basis thus far land has been exlcluded
as suitable or not. In particular, the land to the west of the existing
cemetery; is this physically suitable? Is it merely the pattern of
ownership which makes this land (existing gardens) unsuitable? If this is
the case, the land to the north-west is not “the only realistic choice” it is
merely one of a number of choices. On what basis are these choices
 The Estate has always said that, despite having a policy of not selling
ground, it would be prepared to make an exception for the extension of
the graveyard so long as it was clear that its ground was manifestly the
best-located and there was a clear pattern of real participation by the
various other local stakeholders. The Estate should not be seen as the
easy option merely because other owners are prepared to be
intransigent. Similarly, if local stakeholders are themselves not prepared
to make any compromise to their own positions one must question the
degree to which they really want this cemetery extension.
 The [Estate] ground to the North West has acknowledged access
problems. The Estate has offered alternative access to this ground if the
other terms of an acceptable deal can be agreed. Ultimately the Estate
wants to end up with a workable and practical extension to the graveyard
[assuming this is indeed wanted].
 The Estate considers it vital that any extension (wherever sited) should
be bounded by a suitable wall. A simple wire or wooden fence would be
inadequate given the timescale of the role that the extension has to play
in the community.
 The Estate believes that the best site for this extension is the land to the
west of the church, around the war memorial. The Estate has offered to
participate in a deal which would see homeowners receive alternative
plots of land for their gardens if other owners are similarly prepared to
rationalise ownership in this part of Carnbee. If the ownership issue
could be resolved, this ground offers a much more practical site than an
extension to the north-west. The Estate notes that the Council are
considering exercising compulsory purchase powers. If this is the case,
it must demonstrate that the Council does not consider existing patterns
of ownership to be an issue in its choice of site for the graveyard
extension. No other reason has been given for not considering the
ground around the war memorial.
There are operational problems for the Council with this in terms of access but
otherwise this suggestion is acceptable. This is on the understanding that the
land can be purchased within an acceptable time frame, at an acceptable price
and that development costs are not too onerous.
This is the preference of the Presbytery and Community Council with no
It would be acceptable to the Estate if agreement can be reached on the sale of
the Glebe though we are led to believe this is unrealistic for the foreseeable
It is unlikely that agreement will be reached on the sale of the Glebe within the
time scale necessary to allow continuity of burials at Carnbee.
3 – New Carbee Cemetery
A search of potentially suitable sites was carried out, including the existing
Glebe. No alternative was identified that was considered suitable/viable.
Council comments: (positive)
 As 1 above.
Council comments: (negative)
 As 1 above.
Presbytery Comments:
 No comments received.
Community Council Comments:
 None
Estate Comments:
 Many of the same issues apply. However, on top of these, little
consideration seems to have been given to creating a cemetery in or
around Arncroach. There are plenty of sites with good access in
Arncroach. The Estate would welcome a better understanding of what
processes have been gone through in seeking an alternative site.
This has been discounted due to the lack of a suitable site.
The third suggestion has been discounted leaving two alternatives available for
the Council. The clear local preference is 2 above, if the site can be acquired
and the costs are acceptable to the Council. However the owner is unlikely to
agree to sell the land unless the Glebe is made available. In the circumstances
it appears the Council has the following options:
a) Request that the decision to not sell Glebe land be reviewed and if it is
reconsider the proposals at that time.
b) Abandon the proposals and proceed with improvements elsewhere.
c) Instigate proceedings to acquire the land for the cemetery extension
under Section 12 of the Burial (Scotland) Act 1855.
Michael McArdle
30 August 2012

Appendix 1
Fife Council will purchase from the Estate an area of land to the north of the
existing cemetery to create an extension to it. Access will be from the existing
The Estate will purchase from the Church of Scotland an area of land to the
south of Carnbee House.
The attached plan highlights the respective sites. Please note neither of the two
sites to be sold has been surveyed and the areas have been scaled from plan.
These will require to be surveyed to obtain an accurate area and in the case of
the Cemetery Extension agree the boundary line.
Existing Cemetery: shown hatched green (488 sqm or thereby).
Cemetery Extension: shown stippled red (455 sqm or thereby scaled).
Estate Purchase: shown crosshatched blue (9123 sqm or thereby scaled).
Fife Council Purchase
Fife Council will purchase the area extending to 488 sqm from the Estate. The
main terms will be:
 The value is to be agreed (DV to be instructed to act for Fife Council).
 The area will be used as an extension to the existing cemetery.
 Access to the area will be taken from the existing cemetery.
 A new boundary fence and hedge will be erected and maintained by Fife
Council to separate the area purchased from that retained by the Estate.
(The Estate suggest this should be a wall not fence and hedge.)
 Fife Council will be responsible for obtaining all necessary consents for
the proposed use of the area as a cemetery extension.
 Fife Council will be responsible for all fees applicable to this transaction.
Estate Purchase
The Estate will purchase the area extending to 9123 sqm from the Church of
Scotland. The main terms will be:
 The value is to be agreed taking account of the rate paid by the Council
for the cemetery extension land.
 The area will be used for agricultural purposes.
 Access to the area will be taken from the existing road.
 The Estate will be responsible for obtaining all necessary consents for
the proposed use of the area.
 The Estate will be responsible for all fees applicable to this transaction.
 The Estate is happy to be bound to continue the existing grazing (or
other letting) arrangement on this land.
 It has been stated that the Church of Scotland has a blanket ban on
selling such plots of agricultural land. The Estate has no knowledge of
any such ban and would welcome being furnished with a document
explaining such a ban. To the knowledge of the Estate, no such ban is in
fact in place.

PDF: CarnbeeCemeteryExtension_v6