AN increase has been approved for the number of mourners allowed at Hollinwood Crematorium Chapel.

The easing of lockdown restriction has led Oldham Council to increase those allowed to attend funerals to 22.

Social distancing will still remain in place during ceremonies and funeral directors have been updated about the change. The front pew will be reserved for immediate family.

New guidelines have been agreed among GM councils.

Chapel services prior to burial and extended Chapel services have also restarted.

Outside funeral prayers and grave side services will be limited to a maximum of 30 people in line with Government guidance.

Burial and scattering of cremated remains have now also resumed.

Cll rBarbara Brownridge, the council's neighbourhoods cabinet member, said: "Sadly, families across Oldham have lost relatives to coronavirus, and more are likely to do so.

“Since lockdown started, we have had to restrict the number of people attending funerals to protect mourners, funeral directors and our staff.

“Following the government’s decision to ease lockdown rules we now feel it is the right time to increase the number of people who can attend funerals. Hopefully, this will help bereaved families at what is already a difficult time.

“If you are attending a funeral, we’d ask you to carry on social distancing and remember to wash your hands regularly.”

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