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New regulations introduced for babies ashes

Changes have been made to the treatment of babies ashes following a BBC investigation which found that 60 families did not have the ashes of their babies returned to them from Emstrey Crematorium in Shrewsbury between 1996 and 2012.

Concerns raised about 30 more crematoria then led to a government review.

New regulations mean that there will now be an application form explaining to families that in some cases, the ashes of their babies will not be returned to them.

The guidance suggested that such instances were rare and usually related to “the cremation of very small or stillborn babies”.

Campaign group Action for Ashes has said that this means families will be able to make informed decisions about cremation and burial, and have the chance to change their minds.

Glen Perkins, founder of Action for Ashes, said: “The biggest thing we would like to happen, in the future, is the appointment of an inspector of crematoria, which is something we have mentioned a number of times. I am delighted that these new regulations have come in to force and there is now a lot more clarity for families.

“But we still need an inspector of crematoria and that is something I will continue to push for. If we are going to have full transparency, an inspector is needed. I know that will be further expense to the government but it is a necessity.”

He added: “For me it is like looking at the world through a veil of tears. Mentally it is a constant drain – a battle. But I have got a lot of hope and I am not going to give up. I will keep the pressure on. I am so pleased with these changes, it is fantastic but I hope we can change even more.”

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