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Agenda item

Quarterly Performance and Operational Report


The Committee considered theQuarterly Performance and Operational report of the Bereavement Services Manager that provided Members with an update relating to performance and other operational matters (for copy see file of minutes).


The Bereavement Services Manager informed the Joint Committee that the report covered the period from 1 September 2019 to 31 December 2019.  He noted that there had been an increase of 47 cremations with comparative data in the same period last year.  The increase was partly due to the introduction of direct cremations with 19 direct cremations being carried out that were not attended.

The Bereavement Services Manager notified the Joint Committee that the number and value of memorials had decreased with the introduction of the small memorial towers around the grounds.  He confirmed that an application was to be submitted for the 2020 Green Flag award that Mountsett Crematorium had achieved for the last eight years running and progress would be reported at a future meeting.


Following the re-advertisement for the relief Crematorium Attendant posts the Bereavement Services Manager confirmed that two attendants had been employed, one to cover at Mountsett Crematorium and the other to cover both Mountsett and Durham Crematoriums.


In relation to the Business Administration Apprenticeship two-year fixed term contract the Bereavement Services Manager advised that it would come to an end on 2nd September 2020.  He complimented the current postholder who had become a valuable member of the team and had settled in well.  On conclusion of the fixed term contract there were two options available to address the post.  One option would be to create a full time Technical post and freeze the Apprentice post and the second option would be to replace the Business Administration Apprenticeship post when the apprenticeship was complete.


Councillor Temple asked if a Technical Assistant post was created would another apprenticeship be on offer.


The Bereavement Services Manager confirmed that if the Technical Assistant post was created it was hoped the current apprentice would apply for this role, subject to the relevant HR recruitment procedures.  He added that they would not take on another apprentice as that post would then be frozen until a future date.  


The Bereavement Services Manager responded to Councillor Charlton’s question that the Business Administration Apprenticeship would be happy to take on the new post of Technical Assistant if it was created and successful at interview. 


The Bereavement Services Manager reported that a cheque had been received for £8,000 through the recycling of metals scheme that the Crematorium ran.  The funds were donated to the Royal British Legion.


The Bereavement Services Manager notified Members that the dedicated website for the Crematorium went live on 16 December 2019. The site included the Book of Remembrance that could now be viewed on-line.  The website had received positive feedback but could only be accessed through Google Chrome.  He noted that the website would be developed further in the future to possibly include the daily Order of Services. 




(i)      That the current performance of the crematorium be noted.


(ii)      That the continued success with regards to the Green Flag be noted.


(iii)     That the current situation with regards to the relief Crematorium Attendant’s post be noted.


(iv)     That the creation of a full time Technical Assistant post was agreed.


(v)     That the updated position with regards to the recycling of metals scheme be noted.


(vi)     That the completion of the Crematorium website be noted.


Supporting documents:


Democratic Services
Durham County Council
County Hall
County Durham
03000 269 714