Page last updated at 16:44 GMT, Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Burial site for Muslim community

A dedicated Muslim burial area has been introduced for the first time in a Dorset town.

The burial area, in Kinson cemetery, Bournemouth, will help to meet the religious customs of the Muslim community, the borough council said.

Bournemouth's cemeteries were laid from 1878 to 1938 and in line with Christian traditions, meaning a Muslim burial would take up two spaces to face Mecca.

Muslim families were expected to pay for both plots when planning a funeral.

Families will now be able to pay for a single grave, which will have a fence erected around it to mark the area in accordance with Muslim custom.

The location was chosen in consultation with Majid Yasin, director at the Bournemouth Islamic Centre, and Mark Phillips, of Faith Links, a local interfaith project.

Councillor David Smith said: "At a time which is difficult for families of loved ones to deal with, it is important that we meet the burial needs of all of our residents in the community irrespective of religion.

"I am very pleased that we now have this dedicated site in Kinson Cemetery."

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