Farley residents say they've been left in the dark after begging for answers over the possible health effects of a proposed crematorium in their suburb.
Farley resident of the past 42 years, Colleen Canny said she had asked Maitland City Council about potential emissions from the proposed crematorium on multiple occasions but had received little in the way of a response.
"I just want to know, do I need to be worried?" she said. "Do they understand the implications?
"We're on a property with cattle, we want to know if they can graze and drink the water in the dam.
"My husband is recovering from cancer and I wouldn't want anyone to go through that because of this."
The crematorium proposal was lodged by Fry Bros funerals. When approached by The Mercury about the proposal, a spokesperson for Fry Bros said council would not approve the development application if it was not safe.
But Ms Canny said she had written to council about the issue twice and received no reassurance.
She said the community group 'Say No To Farley Crematorium' had also sent letters to council, asked mayor Loretta Baker to speak at one of their monthly meetings and approached every Maitland councillor.
"We haven't had much of a response except to say they've received our correspondence," she said.
Council placed the crematorium and cemetery proposal on public exhibition in January. More than 100 submissions were lodged during the 30 day public exhibition period.
Ms Canny said she only objected to the proposed development if there were definite side effects.
"It is a personal concern of mine," she said.
"If I can get answers saying we'll be fine, then that's okay," she said. "I would just like some answers."
Ms Canny said people often pointed to Beresfield as an example of it being fine to live near a crematorium, but said that site was already in use well before people lived there.
"I've lived in Farley for 42 years, I don't want to move but I would leave the area if we found out the effects were bad.
"But what does all this do to your property values?"
Fellow Farley resident Barbara Bright is against the crematorium in any capacity.
She pointed out the development application said that there would be emissions, which led her to believe there would be too many risks if it went ahead.
"People will say it's safe, but look at Roundup - people said that was safe and now it's involved in a $2 billion lawsuit," she said.
"The types of burners they said they're going to use emit mercury. There is no amount of mercury that is safe. Once there is contamination, how do you get rid of that?"
The residents group is in the process of having local dams, creeks and water tanks tested for various metals, to compare to if the development goes ahead.
The Mercury asked council if it knew the possible effects of the crematorium.
In a reply statement, council's development assessment coordinator Leanne Harris said the development application was "still under assessment and awaiting additional information from the applicant on a number of issues".
The proposed $3.2 million development would involve the construction of a 300-capacity chapel, 5000-plot cemetery and memorial gardens with 10,000 niche capacity on Old North Road.
A date for council determination is yet to be confirmed.