Markeaton Crematorium has been using innovative ways to raise funds for charities.

The crematorium, run by Derby City Council, is a member of the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management’s (ICCM) national metals recycling scheme, and has been recycling metal from their cremations, and selling it to raise money.

In Derby, local charities have received almost £20,000, supporting charities like CRUSE, Derby SANDS, Treetops Hospice, The Laura Centre, Marie Curie and Nightingale Macmillan Unit.

Following a cremation, remains may contain metals from orthopedic implants, such as hip or knee replacement joints, as well as items from the construction of the coffin. When a bereaved family gives consent, these metals are recycled, with proceeds donated to the charity of their choice.

Historically, when metal was removed after cremation, metal has been disposed of, if not claimed by family or loved ones. However with developments in technology, this metal can be broken down and reused in order to make a difference to local communities, while minimising any impact on the environment.

Most recently, staff at Markeaton Crematorium presented local charity Derbyshire Asbestos Support Team (DAST) with a cheque for £5,000. This donation will be used to help support DAST’s Derby Lighthouse Bereavement Support Group.

Bereavement Support Worker Jo Reeve works for DAST and said:

“Now that we have had this donation from the Crematorium we will be able to keep this group running for at least another year. We are open to new members – if you have been affected by an asbestos related death then come and join us.”

DAST’s Derby Lighthouse Bereavement Support Group brings together any resident of the city and beyond that is grieving someone lost to asbestos disease. The group meets at the Book Café on the Cornmarket every third Tuesday of the month from 1.00pm – 3.00pm.

Sheena Ratcliffe, the Crematorium’s Assistant Bereavement Services Manager added:

“Our metal recycling scheme raises thousands of pounds for a range of local charities each year. We decided to support DAST because of the great work that they do in supporting families that have been affected by asbestos diseases.

“Because of Derby’s industrial heritage, we have a high rate of bereavements due to asbestos cancers in the city and we wanted to do something to help.”

Cabinet Member for Communities, Neighborhoods and Street Pride, Councillor Johnathan Smale, offered his thanks to families:

“I think this is a really interesting scheme, and a very unique one too! We have the chance to reduce our impact on the environment by recycling the metal collected at the crematorium, and we also get to offer help to really deserving charities which is just brilliant really.

“I wanted to particularly thank those bereaved families who have given their consent for metal to be used, meaning we can help local charities who are providing much needed support to bereaved families and loved ones.”