Village population boom means Grimsargh churchyard is running out of graves

A village which has almost doubled in size in 20 years is running out of graves in its local churchyard.

Thursday, 11th November 2021, 3:35 pm

Grimsargh has seen such a population boom since the Millennium that St Michael's Church has been forced to apply to extend its cemetery.

An application to turn an unused piece of land adjacent to the burial ground has been sent to Preston City Council.

And a report submitted with it says the extension is "essential."

Almost full - the St Michael's graveyard.

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The report's author, Mrs Jayne Woollam of the Parochial Church Council, said: "The graveyard is now nearly full.

"The community and the population are growing rapidly. New estates are being built on the fringes of the village.

"The population has extended rapidly over the last 20 years and is continuing to grow apace. Indeed the population has nearly doubled over the past 20 years.

St Michael's wants to extend its churchyard to cope with population boom.

"The need for more burial plots is now essential for the village.

"The proposed extension to the graveyard will accommodate a further 120 burial plots and this extension should be sufficient capacity for the village for many years, based on current trends."

Mrs Woollam says the church is thriving with an active Christian community.

"It serves the whole village and reaches out to the whole community in all kinds of ways. It is used by the whole community, not just the regular congregation.

"The church graveyard is, of course, available to the whole community too."

The plot of land earmarked for the extension is alongside the graveyard and, while it has not been used for many years, it is maintained by the church.

St Michael's Parochial Church Council says it intends to plant native trees and plants along the edge of the new piece of land to promote wildlife.

"The Parochial Church Council believes that the graveyard extension is much needed and hopes that this planning application is successful."

There has been a church on the site for more than 300 years - St Michael's celebrated its tri-centenary in 2016.

The current church was built in 1868 and there are graves in the churchyard which pre-date that time. The current graveyard was previously extended in 1902.