No family members will be able to attend cremations at Roselawn Crematorium from Monday due to the spread of coronavirus, Belfast City Council has said.
In a statement, a spokesperson said that the decision had to be taken in order to “protect the integrity of the cremation service for Northern Ireland” over the coming weeks and months.
It will also help to protect staff and grieving families and friends from the spread of Covid-19.
“We are working with funeral directors, undertakers, and faith groups to ensure that bereaved families are aware of these new measures and are given support at this incredibly difficult time,” the statement said.
“We understand that families may wish to make alternative arrangements to hold a service or ceremony elsewhere.
“Council wishes to express its deep sympathy to all families who face the passing of a loved in these very difficult circumstances.”
The statement further added: “Burials are still taking place - however, we are asking mourners at the graveside and funeral directors to consider public health advice around social distancing.
“The City of Belfast Crematorium is a regional service and provides cremation services for Northern Ireland, as well as being accessible to people from the Republic of Ireland.
“It is the only facility available in Northern Ireland and it is essential that we maintain the ability to operate this facility effectively in the coming months.”
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