Proposed Ballyearl cemetery is buried

Carnmoney Cemetery.
Carnmoney Cemetery.

Plans for a proposed new cemetery on the Ashley Road have been scrapped after a price for the land could not be agreed.

The Times understands the decision was made by elected members in committee during the May meeting of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council.

Commenting on the issue, a spokesperson for the local authority said: “At the council meeting on May 30, it was decided that no further action would be taken regarding the purchase of the Ashley Road site.

“The council was unable to agree a suitable purchase price with the landowner for this site. No new cemetery sites have currently been identified. When Carnmoney Cemetery reaches capacity the council has sufficient burial capacity at other sites in the borough.”

Welcoming the decision, DUP representative, Cllr Stephen Ross said: “This is a weight off the shoulders of Ashley Road residents and the residents of the surrounding Ballyearl area. A country road with restricted vehicular access is not the place for a new cemetery.”

Highlighting other cemetery provision for residents in the borough, Alliance representative, Cllr John Blair said: “There was minimal objection to this site compared to the overwhelming expression of opinion expressed previously over the ludicrous suggestion of the Valley Park site.

“I think it has been pretty well established that the borough has ample cemetery provision in Ballyclare and Antrim to meet demand for at least the next 20 years. I also think a reality has set in that there will come a time in any built-up or urban area that there is simply no space left because of the volume of development and urbanisation for new cemetery provision.”