Significant bedrock removal works to commence at Portlethen cemetery

A programme of significant bedrock removal work is to be undertaken at Portlethen cemetery in the next few weeks.

In recent years, work to excavate new lairs has become increasingly difficult, mostly due to very large boulders, and in some cases bedrock, under the soil.

This has meant that specialist equipment has been required, at significant cost and causing the ground on the site to become damaged and look unsightly.

Geophysical surveys and test digs were undertaken in a bid to determine how much bedrock was under the site of the cemetery earmarked for new lair.

Owing to the significant volumes uncovered, specialist heavy equipment is being brought in later this month to begin clearing the cemetery of bedrock.

This work will be undertaken during daylight hours only, but owing to the scale of the problem a firm timeframe cannot be established at the present time.

By its very nature, the bedrock removal process will be noisy and Aberdeenshire Council apologises in advance for any disruption caused.

While unaffected areas of the cemetery will continue to function during the scheme, all works will be suspended during funerals and a programme of re-turfing and landscaping will follow.

Philip McKay, Head of Service for Roads, Waste and Landscape Services, who has overall responsibility for cemeteries and burials, said: “We appreciate the sensitivities of large-scale work in any cemetery and we appreciate this necessary work will cause some noise and disruption to the neighbouring community.

“These works at Portlethen are absolutely essential and I can assure residents that we are treating the situation with sensitivity and professionalism.

“Our team will respect all existing lairs and will be working closely with families on burial options which are suitable and respectful.”