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Grave memorials

Memorial Items

Memorial items, mementoes and flowers should only be placed upon, or removed from, a grave at the express permission of the grave rights holder. The Cemeteries Office reserve the right to remove items which are offensive to cemetery users, or which the grave rights holder has not approved.

Items should not extend beyond the grave boundaries (or 18" from the memorial site on lawn graves), so as not to impact on nearby graves, cemetery visitors or staff. 

Under no circumstances are balloons permitted to remain on graves, or to be released in the cemetery. Balloons will cause a detrimental impact to our environment, and there are appropriate alternatives to such memorialisation. 

Overall, the Cemeteries Office take a flexible approach to items placed upon graves and we would request that grave rights holders use their own judgement as to what type of items are suitable. Please note that items left on graves are the responsibility of the grave rights holder.

Should grave owners wish to add living wreaths (such as moss/holly etc) to the graves over the Christmas period, we ask that they are removed by the end of January. After this time, and following a period of notice within the cemeteries, Grounds Maintenance staff will remove and discard such items.

Responsibility of memorials

Whilst the Cemeteries Office is responsible for maintaining a safe environment within the cemetery, the Grave Deed Owner has the responsibility to maintain the memorial itself in a safe condition.

Memorials need to conform to cemetery regulations with regard to size and fixings. The proposed memorial also needs to be checked for stability under health and safety regulations, as well as ensuring that it will be erected in a safe manner. This helps to protect your interests although you will remain responsible for the maintenance of the memorial in the future. if you fail to do this, the Cemetery Staff may take action to make the memorial safe.

Memorial masons

The Cemeteries Office has in place a list of Registered Memorial Masons, who have been approved to work within our council Cemeteries.

Lancaster City Council’s Memorial Mason Registration Scheme is in place as a measure to ensure the safety of all our cemetery users, and also to provide the memorial applicant with reassurance that the memorial work will be completed to a high standard.

All successful applicants to the memorial mason scheme must carry out any memorial work safely, by competent masons, who are suitable insured and who work to nationally recognised standards.  

Only memorial masons registered with this scheme may carry out work to memorials within any of the Lancaster City Council managed Cemeteries. This list can be obtained by contacting the Cemeteries Office.

Any memorial masons wishing to join the scheme should be prepared to make the necessary application, which includes proof of their liability cover, proof of their NAMM accreditation, details of references, and adminstration payment. Any potential applicants should contact the Cemeteries Office directly.

War Memorial at Lancaster Cemetery
War Memorial at Lancaster Cemetery


Last updated: 18 March 2021

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