Thank you for drawing attention to the building of a new road across graves at Hodley chapel.

This has naturally caused immense stress, strain and frustration to families and friends of the deceased and leaves a number of questions that need to be answered. These include:-

• Did the planning officer actually visit the site?

• If not, why not?

• Why weren’t either of two other access options to the new car park done rather than build across a graveyard?

• In view of the sensitivity of the matter why didn’t officers take the application to committee?

• Why were families not notified of the impending work?

• Why, when a formal letter of complaint, signed by 23 local residents, sent 12th September 2022 to Powys Council has not even been acknowledged or had a response as expected?


• Reports refer to no disturbance to be made to any graves. How do you therefore build a new road over graves without disturbing them?

• What has happened to the ashes of individuals buried within the last 50 years which were directly where the new road is?

• The Disused Burial Grounds (Amendment) Act 1981 state: “Where any human remains are interred in such land no building shall be erected upon it otherwise than in accordance with section 3 of the principal Act unless: (a) the human remains have been removed and reinterred or cremated in accordance with the provisions of the Schedule to this Act; and (b) any tombstones, monuments or memorials commemorating the deceased persons have been dealt with in accordance with those provision.”

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• “Before removing any human remains, or before any work is undertaken which does not involve the disturbance of the remains of any deceased person buried in a grave but which will render the grave inaccessible, or before removing any tombstones, monuments or other memorials commemorating the deceased persons:

(a)publish in a newspaper circulating in the locality a notice of intention to do so at least once during each of two successive weeks; and

(b)display a like notice in a conspicuous place where the remains are interred;”

Whatever the situation regarding planning law, there is a moral duty for Powys Council to respect these families and thus I call on them to meet with them to agree a way forward. Powys is a public authority and should remember that.

As for the Gospel church, as developers, they will surely be familiar with the principle of ‘love thy neighbour’. They should therefore look at reinstating the cemetery and utilising another potential access which could be easily done.

What has happened here is morally and ethically wrong and some humility and respect by the authority and developers would go a long way.
Cllr Elwyn Vaughan