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Cambridge City Crematorium and Huntingdon Road Cemetery

Cambridge City Crematorium

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Funerals at the crematorium

Cambridge Crematorium is a suitable funeral venue, regardless of whether the funeral is faith-based or not. The crematorium is committed to meeting the needs of those arranging a funeral and will accommodate any arrangements it considers appropriate.

Ceremonies, whether religious or secular, may be conducted at the crematorium within the time allowed for each funeral.

Alternatively, a service may take place in any separate place of worship followed by a brief committal ceremony at the crematorium. It is also possible to have a committal without any ceremony beforehand.

Families can arrange for their minister to conduct the service, or when required funeral directors can secure the services of a suitable minister on behalf of the family.

  • For a full list of prices for services offered by Cambridge cemeteries and the crematorium, read the fees and forms page.

Funeral ceremonies

Mourners will normally gather at the crematorium in the waiting room or close to the entrance of the chapel a few minutes before the appointed time of the funeral service.

The service will commence at the publicised time. When the principal mourners are ready to proceed, the funeral director will carry the coffin into the chapel unless family bearers are used by request.

The coffin will be placed on the catafalque (a platform for the coffin) and mourners will be directed to their seats, after which the service will proceed.

At the end of the service the mourners leave the chapel and can then inspect the floral tributes.

Committal

After the committal the coffin is withdrawn into the crem room where the nameplate is carefully checked by crematorium staff to ensure the correct identity of the deceased (this also happens before the service). An identity card will then accompany the coffin and the resultant remains until their final disposal or removal from the crematorium.

The reception of the coffin in the crem room and its introduction into a cremator can be witnessed by relatives if arranged with the crematorium manager. It is preferable to advise the funeral director of these requirements as early as possible when making the funeral arrangements.

Cremation

Each cremation is carried out separately but exceptions might be made, for instance, in the case of mother and baby or twin children providing that the next of kin has made a specific request in this regard.

If you are arranging a funeral and need to notify the crematorium about a cremation, please download, read and complete the following form, then return it to:

Bereavement Services Manager
Cambridge City Crematorium
Huntingdon Road
Cambridge CB3 0JJ

Coffins

Coffins are placed in the cremator in exactly the same condition they are received at the crematorium. A cremator can physically accept only one coffin at a time and all remains are removed before the unit can be used again.

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 has placed a responsibility on cremation authorities to ensure that the process is completed under controlled conditions, which will minimise the impact on the environment.

Items left with a body for cremation

The Environment Protection Act 1990 makes it necessary for any items included in the coffin for presentation or viewing purposes, including floral tributes, to be removed by the funeral director before the coffin is conveyed to the crematorium.

It is preferable that all items of jewellery be removed from the body before the coffin is conveyed to the crematorium. The funeral director should ascertain your wishes in respect of this matter when the funeral arrangements are being discussed. It will not be possible to recover any items of jewellery after the coffin has been received at the crematorium.

An identity card accompanies the coffin and cremated remains throughout the process until final disposal.

Cremated remains

At the conclusion of a cremation the cremated remains are removed in their entirety and conveyed to a treatment area in a special container.

Ferrous metals used in the construction of the coffin or metal used in medical implants are extracted and retained for separate disposal. Non-ferrous metals, which may include an unrecognisable element of precious material, will not be salvaged for any purpose and will be disposed of.

The cremation of an adult will normally result in the presentation of cremated remains weighing between two and four kilograms. In the case of a body of an infant it may not be possible to guarantee that any remains will be collectable. This is due to the cartilaginous nature of the bone structure.

After cremation

According to the instructions received from the applicant for cremation, the cremated remains may be collected from the crematorium by family or the funeral director.

Remains can also be interred in a memorial vault, or strewn within the grounds either in a place specifically chosen by the family or our woodlands. Families may choose to be present when the remains are interred or strewn, although appointments need to be booked in advance. Cremated remains can be retained at the crematorium for a limited period, although a charge may be made for this facility.

When cremated remains are strewn, they are distributed over a wide area of ground. Chemical reactions resulting from exposure to the elements quickly break down the remains, already in granular form, so that within a few days little trace can be observed.

Book of remembrance

For a permanent memorial to the deceased there is the book of remembrance situated between the columbarium and east chapel. The memorials books are beautifully bound in leather, richly tooled, and the leaves are of the finest paper. The books have been fashioned by hand in traditional style with the permanence and artistic excellence of medieval illuminated missals.

A page is devoted to each day of the year in order that inscriptions can be viewed on the appropriate anniversary. The pages to the book of remembrance are turned daily, including all bank holidays.  The Book of Remembrance chapel is open between 9 am and 5 pm every day of the year, including weekends and bank holidays.

Gardens of remembrance

The gardens of remembrance have been fully landscaped, which provide a secluded and peaceful environment where cremated remains can be strewn. Ornamental shrubs, rose bushes and trees contribute to make a tranquil area where people can sit on seats dedicated to the memory of loved ones.

The more formal areas contain memorial vaults for the interment of cremated remains, which are situated under the pergolas and in the sunken garden.

There is also a columbarium, which is sited close to the east chapel where cremated remains rest in inscribed caskets. We also have an area dedicated to children and babies which has a teddy bears' picnic theme.

History of the crematorium

The crematorium was opened in 1938 as a private concern before being taken over in 1950 by Cambridge City Council. There are two chapels at the crematorium, the east which was opened in 1938 and the west opened in 1991.

East chapel

The traditional east chapel retains many of its original features and faces the crematorium entrance. It can seat approximately 55 people. The chapel is on a single level giving easy access for wheelchairs.

This chapel is equipped with a Johannes organ as well as facilities for playing CD music if required, together with induction loop system. The chapel also uses the Wesley Music System, a specially adapted PC Desktop system, loaded with music libraries. The system is connected to the crematorium's existing speaker system.

West chapel

The modern west chapel, completed in 1991 and situated behind the east chapel, has extended the service provided by the crematorium. It enhances the existing environment, providing seating for 193 people, with 139 in the main body of the chapel and 54 on the balcony.


Huntingdon Road Cemetery

Situated adjacent to the crematorium and accessed from the same approach road, Huntingdon Road Cemetery has been developed as an extension of Cambridge City Cemetery.

Burial space

Burial space is available in traditional, lawned and secular plots either side of a central driveway.

A unique feature of the Huntingdon Road Cemetery is the green burial site, an enclosed copse surrounded by native hedgerows and discretely screened from the crematorium gardens.

Memorials

Memorial vaults and benches are being provided along the drive to enhance the landscaping.


Access to the building

There is ramped access throughout the building and accessible toilets.

A wheelchair accessible pathway through the cemetery leads to the memorial woodland.


Parking

The east car park has 44 car parking spaces and two Blue Badge parking spaces, and the west car park has 54 car spaces and two Blue Badge spaces.

Getting here

Huntingdon Road Cemetery and Cambridge City Crematorium are five miles from the centre of Cambridge, off the A14 westbound carriageway. Detailed directions can be found further down this page.

The local bus service Citi 5 stops outside the main entrance. Users of this form of public transport leaving the crematorium must first catch the bus to Bar Hill for the return journey to Cambridge.

Sat nav users please note that you should not solely rely on using your sat nav to find the cemetery and crematorium. In the past sat nav users have had trouble locating the venue. You may wish to note the directions provided further down this page.

Detailed directions

M11 approach

If you are approaching the crematorium from the south, using the M11, leave the M11 at junction 14, signposted A14 east/Newmarket.

Keep in the right hand lane and follow the signs marked A14 west/Huntingdon. Stay in this lane - the road will run parallel with the M11.

When you rejoin the road on the inside carriageway, the crematorium is approximately 300 yards from this point.

You will soon see another inside lane, which is reddish brown in colour and marked 'Keep Clear'. Drop into this lane as soon as possible, it is for crematorium traffic. Reduce your speed as high-sided vehicles parked in a lay-by often obscure the entrance to the site, which is immediately on your left and is easily missed.

A14 (westbound) approach

If you are approaching the crematorium from the east, using the A14 westbound, exit at junction 31, the M11 interchange.

Keep in the right hand lane and follow the signs for A14 west/Huntingdon.

As the road merges with the M11 keep in the inside lane as the crematorium is approximately 300 yards from this junction.

There will soon be another inside lane, which is reddish brown in colour, and marked 'Keep Clear'. Drop into this lane as soon as possible, as this lane is for crematorium traffic. Reduce your speed as high-sided vehicles parked in a lay-by often obscure the entrance to the site, which is immediately on your left and is easily missed.

A14 (eastbound) approach

If you are approaching the crematorium from the Huntingdon area using the A14 eastbound, keep on the A14.

When the road divides at the commencement of the M11 move over to the right hand lane, marked A1307 Cambridge, and in approximately 100 yards take the right hand turn marked Crematorium/Madingley.

The road soon comes to a T-junction where it is crossed by two lanes of traffic leaving Cambridge - this is one-way so you must turn right.

When you have joined this road the road merges with the A14 westbound/M11. Keep on the inside lane. There will soon be another inside lane that is coloured reddish brown and marked 'Keep Clear'. Drop into this lane as soon as possible, as this is for crematorium traffic. Reduce your speed as high-sided vehicles parked in a lay-by often obscure the entrance to the site, which is immediately on your left and is easily missed.

A428 approach

If you are approaching the crematorium from the west, using the A428, you need to leave the A428 at the Madingley turn, signed Cambridge (S & W). At the roundabout at the end of the slip road turn left into Madingley village.

Follow the road through the village of Madingley and the signs for the A14/crematorium.

This road will bring you to the junction of the A14/M11 interchange. Turn left, being very careful of fast moving traffic.

You will soon come to the inside lane coloured reddish brown and marked 'Keep Clear'. Drop into this lane as soon as possible which is for crematorium traffic.
Reduce your speed as high-sided vehicles often obscure the entrance to the site, which is immediately on your left and is easily missed.


Contact

For further information:

The General Office at Cambridge City Crematorium
Huntingdon Road
Cambridge
CB3 0JJ

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