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Grave memorialisation rule looks set to be enforced for Preston Cemetery

Posted on - 6th March, 2018 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Fishwick, Politics, Preston Council, Preston News, Ribbleton
Preston Cemetery is to see fees rise across the board by an inflation-busting 11% Pic: Stephen Geraghty
Preston Cemetery Pic: Stephen Geraghty

Those with relatives and friends buried in Preston Cemetery look set to see their wishes to decorate graves ignored.

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A consultation was run throughout the Autumn asking for views on what length of memorialisation should be allowed.

The majority of people asked – 53 per cent of 261 respondents – requested personalisation of graves be allowed to the full length of the grave boundary.

However, council officers have recommended Preston City Council’s cabinet adopt the enforcement of its existing rules.

Read more: These are the four options for decorating graves in Preston Cemetery

This caps the amount of decoration or fencing on graves to be two foot six inches.

More than 4,500 people have signed a petition to the city council, which was debated at full council in December 2016, asking it to review the rules on grave decorations.

Patricia Varty handing in the petition at the Town Hall, flanked by Ribbleton councillor Jonathan Saksena and deputy leader councillor Jon Swindells
Patricia Varty handing in the petition at the Town Hall, flanked by Ribbleton councillor Jonathan Saksena and deputy leader councillor Jon Swindells

If approved those with graves in the cemetery not in keeping with the rule would be given up to nine months to comply – if councillors agree – or a stricter three month enforcement period could be implemented.

The report – to the cabinet – states there is a ‘reduced risk of injury to the public from slips, trips and falls’ by limiting the length of memorialisation.

Read more: Family left distraught by earth mound in Preston Cemetery

It goes on to state: “The cemeteries, given their significant size, cost substantially more to maintain than the income generated from grave and burial fees each year. The two foot six inch memorialisation allowance enables the most efficient use of the council’s resources, whilst providing the opportunity for families to place suitable memorialisation.

“The conversion to the current Lawned Cemetery in the 1970`s took over 10 years to achieve and at a significant cost. As a result the cemeteries are more attractive and the practicality of the layout results in enhanced maintenance standards. Regular and uniform mowing operations could be undertaken.”

You can read the full report on the city council website.

Councillors are due to discuss the proposals on Wednesday (14 March).

What do you think about the proposal from the council? Let us know in the comments below

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