A businessman behind controversial plans to build a crematorium on the outskirts of Dundee has defended his project.
Arbroath butcher Guthrie Batchelor has applied to Angus Council to develop a crematorium at Burnside of Duntrune, on the north-east edge of the city.
The plans previously upset nearby residents who claimed the crematorium would be their “worst nightmare”.
Mr Batchelor, who is also a member of the family who own the site, Friockheim-based F M & G Batchelor, has defended the plans.
‘Numerous economic benefits’
He said: “I believe a crematorium is desperately needed within the local authority primarily due to the waiting times to arrange a cremation at the existing ones.
“Also, by having such a facility in the area, there would be social benefits for the local community.
“The situation for the proposed crematorium would significantly reduce journey times for people in the local area who have to travel approximately 40 minutes to the existing crematoria.
“There are also numerous economic benefits, such as the employment during the construction and then the employment of, I believe, three full-time members of staff once the crematorium is open.
“Nearby hospitality businesses will benefit, whether it be hotels/B&B’s or venues with function suites.
“This would be a welcome boost to an industry that has been severely affected by coronavirus restrictions.”
A planning statement on on behalf of Mr Batchelor said there were “no technical impediments to the proposal, and it will have no detrimental impact on the closest residential properties, of which there are few.”
The statement added: “Services will take place primarily during the week, between 9am to 5pm, however there may be some services on a Saturday.
“It is unlikely that there will be any more than four services per day, however it is likely that the average will be three services per day. ”
‘The worst nightmare we could imagine’
The plans include parking for 66 cars and spaces for coaches to pull up and wait.
However, people living close to the site have organised a campaign fearing rural local roads will not cope with traffic to and from the crematorium, which they say could be as many as 300 cars per day.
Management consultant Ian Robertson ,who is leading the campaign, previously said: “This is the worst nightmare we could imagine.
“If this goes ahead there will be traffic coming every hour, on the hour, with funeral corteges coming past our window all day.
“I’ve lived here since 2015 and have made significant investment in the property but some have been here since the ’80s.
“Most of the residents are pensioners and this is the last thing they want appearing at their front doors.”