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Crematoria and places of worship construction projects look set to rise through a glut of projects in the planning pipeline.

In the 12 months to August 2022, projects for crematoria and places of worship worth a total of £287 million were given planning permission according to Glenigan’s construction market research. This total is up 56% on the preceding 12 months.

Glenigan economics director Allan Wilén comments: “This sector often does not get much attention as projects can be small, but our research suggests a slump in work is likely to be reversed as clients look for new ways of funding schemes.”

Work in the pipeline ranges from a £1.8 million extension to The Church of the Most Holy Trinity in Bermondsey, South London, where planning permission has just been granted (Project ID: 17220761) to a £1 million plan to extend Reading Crematorium (Project ID: 20283070). On this project, Glenigan’s market research shows that contractors are due to submit bids to Reading Borough Council by October 7.

Crematoria and Places of Worship with Planning Approval by Region

REGION Value of Projects (£m)
East of England 129
North West 27
South East 24
West Midlands 24
London 17
Scotland 17
South West 14
Wales 12
East Midlands 8
Northern Ireland 8
Yorkshire & Humberside 6
North East 2

Source: Glenigan

Project size increasing

Many of the projects in this sector are typically smaller, but larger schemes are being proposed. The value of the average approved scheme in the latest year was £3.6 million, which is up from £2.6 million in the previous 12 months.

Larger projects in the pipeline include a £5.9 million plan for a mosque at St Margaret’s Road in Bradford (Project ID: 22351942) and a £5 million upgrade of Highgate Cemetery at Swain’s Lane in Camden, North London (Project ID: 20471792).

A planned £7 million crematorium at Steppingley in Bedfordshire has planning permission and construction should start before the end of this year, as Glenigan’s construction research shows tenders for the construction contract were returned on September 27 (Project ID: 19041947).

Work starting slows

The value of work starting has declined, but there are signs of clients showing innovative ways to progress projects.

In the 12 months to August 2022, the total value of crematoria and places of worship projects with a contract awarded fell by a third to £124 million. This came as the number of projects with a contractor appointed fell from 81 to 51. The biggest fall came in London, where contracts were awarded on 11 projects compared to 20 in the previous year.

Crematoria and Place of Worship Awards by Region

REGION Value of Projects (£m)
Yorkshire & Humberside 28
South West 25
East of England 21
London 17
South East 13
West Midlands 7
East Midlands 3
North East 3
Scotland 3
North West 2
Northern Ireland 1
Wales 1

Source: Glenigan

However, projects in this sector are being combined with other work to provide extra financial support. A £4.5 million plans to demolish and rebuild the St Thomas United Reformed Church in Watford will also include eight terraced houses to be sold on the open market (Project ID: 14453836).

In Cardiff, a £2.5 million scheme proposes converting offices at Emlyn House into a place of worship with a mixed class B1 office attached (Project ID: 19434395).

With clients increasingly looking to include places of worship in wider projects, this should help more work progress.

Glenigan customers can see details of all new crematoria and places of worship construction work if part of your subscription.

Not a Glenigan customer, but would like to see detailed sales leads for all new crematoria and places of worship construction work? Request a free demo of Glenigan today so we can show the size of the opportunity for your business.

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Request a free demo of Glenigan today so we can show the size of the opportunity for your business.