Venue: Committee Rooms 2/3, Civic Offices Angel Street Bridgend CF31 4WB. View directions
To appoint a Chairperson of the Joint Committee (from Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council Members)
RESOLVED That Councillor R Turner be appointed Chairperson of the Coychurch Crematorium Joint Committee for the ensuing year.
To appoint a Vice-Chairperson of the Joint Committee (from Bridgend County Borough Council Members)
RESOLVED That Councillor R Young be appointed Vice-Chairperson of the Coychurch Crematorium Joint Committee for the ensuing year.
Declarations of Interest
To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest (if any) from Members/Officers in accordance with the provisions of the Members’ Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1st September 2009.
To receive for approval the Minutes of 09/03/2018
RESOLVED That the minutes of the meeting of the Coychurch Crematorium Joint Committee of 9 March 2018 be approved as a true and accurate record.
The Finance Manager - Financial Control and Closing, presented the report of the Treasurer on the unaudited Annual Accounting Statement following closure of the accounts for the financial year 2017-18 to the Joint Committee and sought approval to submit the Statement for Coychurch Crematorium to the Wales Audit Office.
He explained that under Regulation 14 of the Accounts and Audit (Wales) Regulations 2014, Coychurch Crematorium was required to complete an Annual Accounting Statement as it was classed as a smaller local government body with annual income and expenditure below £2.5 million. The Accounts and Audit (Wales) Regulations 2014 required that the Joint Committee formally approve the Annual Accounting Statement by 30 June and certify that they present fairly the financial position of Coychurch Crematorium.
The Finance Manager – Financial Control and Closing explained that the Annual Accounting Statement showed a net surplus of £176,530, which has been added to the accumulated reserve for the Crematorium brought forward at 31 March 2017, bringing the total of that reserve to £1,258,713 at 31 March 2018 compared to £1,082,183 in the preceding year.
He explained the reasons for the more significant variances from budget with a net underspend of £23k on employees as a result of a vacant post and the Green Spaces and Bereavement Manager not being part of the superannuation scheme. The balance of the underspend was attributable to weekend and evening attendant posts not being filled which were now being covered by a security company. An overspend of £7k on premises was made up of overspends on business rates, maintenance of grounds and electricity, which were offset by underspends on building maintenance and gas. The Finance Manager – Financial Control and Closing informed the Joint Committee of an overspend of £5k on supplies and services which related to spending on security services and equipment repairs and maintenance, which were offset by underspends on uniforms, medical expenses, items for resale and the purchase of equipment. He stated there is an underspend of £4k on agency / contractors and an underspend of £14k on administration, due to lower facilities management costs compared to the previous year. There had been an underspend on capital financing costs due to some of the planned works being delayed until 2018-19 and one being cancelled. He stated that there had been additional income of £106k due to a higher number of cremations and an increase in the provision of cremation related products.
RESOLVED: That the Joint Committee approved the Annual Accounting Statement for Coychurch Crematorium for 2017-18 and agreed to the submission of the Accounting Statement for Coychurch Crematorium to the Wales Audit Office.
The Clerk and Technical Officer reported on the performance of the Crematorium during 2017-18 which was a requirement of the Memorandum of Agreement. The report identified the performance of the crematorium relating to:-
· Number of Cremations;
· Service Standards;
· Planned Expenditure;
· Achievement of Business Plan Objectives.
The Clerk and Technical Officer explained that a quarterly review of questionnaire results was carried out which fed into the annual assessment of the quality of service. For 2017/18 this showed that the overall satisfaction level to a standard of good or excellent remained at 100%. Where necessary, the Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar has responded to the cremation applicant. The Joint Committee was informed of the analysis of the responses received.
The Clerk and Technical Officer informed the Joint Committee of the expenditure undertaken; however the flat roof repairs project has been cancelled following discussion with health and safety.
The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar informed the Joint Committee that the number of cremations had increased from 1,590 last year to 1,620 this year.
The Joint Committee complimented the Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar and her team for the excellent way in which the Crematorium is managed and the grounds are cared for where people can come and remember their loved ones.
The Joint Committee asked whether the second chapel is utilised to hold funerals. The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar informed the Joint Committee that the second chapel has been used on an occasional basis to hold funerals, however many families specifically book the larger chapel. The second chapel has been used on occasions where funeral directors and families have encountered unavoidable delays due to traffic on route. The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar also informed the Joint Committee of the logistical difficulty in having staff operating both chapels at the same time.
RESOLVED: That the Joint Committee noted the report.
The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar reported on the Flower Court facilities and sought approval for further investigation into improvement works.
She reminded the Joint Committee that at the site visit held prior to the meeting; Members were shown the Flower Court facilities to the rear of the Crematorium building where bereaved families greet their congregation and view the floral tributes following the funeral service at the Crallo Chapel. She explained that bottlenecks often occur when large congregations file through one set of doors and into the limited space of the Flower Court and delays can be caused to the funeral service which follows.
The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar reported that the Flower Court facility lends itself to improvement due to its compact layout and there is potential to develop an area of open grass immediately adjoining the Flower Court area to facilitate the construction of a purpose made extension to join the existing facility, to create a much larger flower display and dispersal area. She stated that the costs of initial consultation and design works are estimated at £30,000 and can be accommodated in 2018/19 budget. The provision of further funding for the project would need to be considered in future reports; however there is provision in the Crematorium’s accumulated reserve funds.
RESOLVED: That the Joint Committee:
(1) Approved in principle, the provision of an extension to the Flower Court facility by extending the rear of the Crematorium building;
Authorised the Clerk and Technical Officer to submit a further report on the feasibility of extending the Flower Court facility.
The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar sought nominations and approval of organisations to receive charitable funding from the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management (ICCM) scheme for the recovery of metals arising from cremations and updating the Joint Committee on charity donations made by Coychurch Crematorium.
She explained that Coychurch Crematorium participated in a national scheme for the Recycling of Metals which were derived from the cremation process. Any surplus monies after the deduction of costs from the sale of metals were distributed to charities associated with bereavement services, via the ICCM. The Joint Committee has previously supported charitable donations to Cruse Bereavement Care (Morgannwg), Bridgend Samaritans, Eye to Eye (RCT), Macmillan Cancer Support (Wales), Make a Wish UK, 2 Wish Upon A Star, Ty-Hafan, Tenovus, Marie Curie, with the Stroke Association being nominated in May 2018.
The Bereavement Services Manager and Registrar listed the charities which had approached the Crematorium, however only one charity can be nominated each time. She stated that the charities will be nominated by the Crematorium upon request from the ICCM and in the order listed in the report.
The Joint Committee recommended that Giving to Pink which is the nominated charity of the Mayor of RCT Council be added to the top of the list.
RESOLVED That the Joint Committee:
1) Noted the charitable donations made by Coychurch Crematorium.
Nominated Giving to Pink Stroke to be added to the top of the list and supported the list of suitable charities, for submission for funding from the National Recycling of Metals Scheme.
To consider any other item(s) of business in respect of which notice has been given in accordance with Rule 4 of the Council Procedure Rules and which the person presiding at the meeting is of the opinion should by reason of special circumstances be transacted at the meeting as a matter of urgency.
There were no urgent items.