DCC to spend €670,000 over three years on planning and developing a public burial ground

Donegal County Council plans to spend €670,000 on the provision of a new public burial ground over the next three years.

At present, the council says its Roads & Transportation Directorate oversees a limited maintenance programme of a number of historic burial grounds in Donegal, while other burial grounds are largely controlled by various churches.

However, after a survey of graveyard provision and capacity in 2020, the Council is actively considering the provision of a new burial ground.

Since the 2020 survey, the council says it’s been working with a number of stakeholders, including the Inter-Church Group on Community Graveyard Provision in Donegal, the Black and Ethnic Minority Group, the Intercultural Platform and other Non-Denominational Groups.

Officials say this engagement has allowed the Council to gain a wider understanding of the requirements for multi-denominational burial arrangements in Donegal.

The initial focus will be on areas of greatest need, particularly the greater Letterkenny area, which has the largest population and the greatest cultural diversity. This approach can then be considered as a potential model for the rest of the county.

The Council is considering a number of potential sites in the greater Letterkenny area, with site assessment criteria being developed.

Suitable site assessment criteria  will include:
 Location
 Public consultation
 Accessibility
 Environmental impact
 Topography
 Geology

An essential part of the process will be for the Council to continue to actively engage with the stakeholders listed above, with the Elected Members, and with other relevant
groups. The outcome of these assessments and engagements will be reported back to the Climate Action and Environment SPC and the Elected Members in Plenary Council in
the coming months.

The capital budget agreed at the end of last year sets aside €670,000 for a Burial Grounds Capital Programme in Donegal, with €170,000 being spent this year, and €250,000 in both 2025 and 2026.

This will cover scoping, preliminary design, public consultation, environmental assessment and planning, land acquisition, and construction. This work programme is to be resourced through a combination of own resources and potential external funding.