A council is proposing to save money – and combat global warming – by heating a leisure centre and swimming pool using heat generated by the crematorium next door.
According to the Guardian, Redditch Coulcil in Worcestershire says it can save £14,500 a year by warming its new Abbey Stadium sports centre with heat from the crematorium’s incinerators that would otherwise be lost.
The council, which says it is the first project of its kind in the UK, is holding briefings later this week with faith groups, funeral directors and members of the public to discuss the scheme.
But some local people are concerned. Simon Thomas, of Thomas Brothers Funeral Directors, said: “I don’t know how comfortable people would feel about the swimming pool being heated due to the death of a loved one, I think it’s a bit strange and eerie.”
Council leader Carole Gandy defended the plans, saying it would save money and energy. “I’d much rather use the energy rather than just see it going out of the chimney and heating the sky. It will make absolutely no difference to the people who are using the crematorium for services.”“It’s only a proposal at the moment but personally I’m supportive of it because I think it will save the authority money and, in the long-term, save energy which is what we’re all being told we should do.”
Gordon Hull, from the Federation of Burial and Crematorium Authorities, said: “From an environmental view it makes sense.”