Bedford’s Crematorium chief hopes Captain Tom funeral publicity will encourage others to choose Crem

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Bedford Crematorium

Bedford’s Crematorium chief is hoping that the positive publicity generated by the funeral of Captain Sir Tom Moore will generate more sales at the council facility.

Speaking at a meeting last Thursday (4 March) Bedford Borough Council’s chief officer for the environment said the funeral of the 100 year-old super fundraiser on February 27 had been beamed to more than 100 countries around the world.

“We patted the team on the back, they did a brilliant job there,” said Paul Pace at the meeting of the council’s environment and sustainable communities overview and scrutiny committee.

“The world was watching us because it was beamed to 100 and something countries across the world.

“I think Bedford and everybody involved with Bedford Council can be very pleased that the site did look particularly good. It was a beautiful day.”

Mr Pace added that it has “been really good publicity for the council”.

“I am sure it will highlight that facility we have in Bedford and hopefully we can get some sales through that because it did look really good and the staff did put a lot of effort in as they always do,” he added.

Mr Pace said the crematorium in North Road had been handling 90 cremations a week and there had been delays in services.

There had been a backlog caused by deaths over Christmas but those have been worked through and from next week the team will be on a “business as usual” footing.

Cllr Sue Oliver, who was chairing the committee, said that in the sunshine the crematorium looked “immaculate”.

Cllr Oliver, the Labour group leader who represents Kempston North said: “Congratulations and to all your team. I’m not sure you can claim credit for the good weather though.”

Captain Sir Tom, of Marston Moretaine, raised almost £33m for NHS charities by walking laps of his garden during the first coronavirus lockdown.

Originally from Keighley near Bradford in Yorkshire, Captain Sir Tom died at Bedford Hospital on February 2 after testing positive for Covid.

The family has announced that they plan to celebrate his life on April 30, which would have been his 101st birthday.

by David Tooley
Local Democracy Reporter

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