“City Hall is now dictating to the people of Galway when they can get buried and showing no consideration to the families of the bereaved.”
This is the view of Fine Gael councillor Pádraig Conneely, who said he will oppose any attempt by City Hall to stop burials taking place on Sundays.
It is understood City Hall is proposing to close the city cemeteries on Sundays as part of a series of cost cutting measure the local authority needs to take, owing to the economic downturn. The idea behind the move is to reduce the expenses of having to pay maintenance staff overtime.
However the proposal is likely to be highly controversial as it will affect funeral arrangements and because Sunday is the traditional day people visit the graves of their loved ones.
“Try telling that to City Hall,” Cllr Conneely told the Galway Advertiser. “Not only is City Hall bringing in cutbacks for the living, they are imposing cutbacks on the dead as well.”
A funeral is held three to four days after a person dies. Therefore if a someone dies on a Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday, a funeral may take place on a Sunday. Cllr Conneely also points out that some people will ask for the funeral to be deferred to a Sunday as it is a traditional holy day.
However, if the new proposal is carried through, funerals may not be able to take place on Sundays. “The funeral will then have to be postponed,” said Cllr Conneely. “This could be very traumatic, especially in a case of a tragic death. Also for relatives coming over from Britain, or anywhere abroad, this will make things difficult for them as well.”