A council-run crematorium is planning to carry out ”science-fiction” funerals including FREEZE-DRYING and even DISSOLVING dead bodies, it emerged today.
Cambridge City Crematorium (pictured) have proposed a set of gruesome after-death arrangements – which they claim are more environmentally-friendly than traditional funerals.
Bosses have called for a 21st century ”commercial approach” towards handling death and asked Cambridge City Council to let them use futuristic technologies.
Plans include using liquid nitrogen to chill a body to -196C, in a process called ”promession” or ”cyromation”, when it is so brittle it can be fragmented and cleaned.
The body is then freeze-dried to remove moisture and the dust is used as environmentally-friendly compost or buried in a biodegradable casket.
Crematorium chiefs also want to place bodies in silk bags and submerge them in a 160C alkaline solution – which would dissolve them in around three hours.
The grisly procedure, called ”resomation”, dissolves all the organs and bones and leaves behind a green-brown liquid and white dust.
The liquid can be disposed in a number of different ways, including being flushed into the sewerage system.
Bereavement services manager Tracy Lawrence said the ”greener” alternatives emit less pollution than traditional cremation.
She said: ”The plans proposes improvements to the quality and value of services to customers and envisages a modern, forward-looking service delivering good value and offering improved returns to future investment.”
The move is intended to tackle a lack of burial space and environmental concerns as 573lbs of carbon dioxide are released by each cremated corpse.
Six states in America have passed legislation to allow resomation and the Scottish company Resomation Ltd says it is in talks to allow the process in the UK.
Although the ashes can be recycled in waste systems, the residue can also be put in urns and handed over to relatives of the dead like normal ashes from crematoriums.
The council-run crematorium is also planning services for pets and flower shop to boost its income.
The crematorium has made £276,000 profit in the past five years but only picks up £44 per funeral service compared to a whopping £244 which can be charged by private operators.
Plans for a super-size cremator in Cambridge which could cope with wider coffins have been approved, while natural burials – in which bodies are interred at shallow depths in biodegradable containers – are already on offer.