St Mary the Virgin, Willingdon.


Willingdon Churchyard Regulations

Churchyards are governed by rules set by the chancellor of the diocese which are put in place to make sure that churchyards can be enjoyed by everyone and our Parochial Church Council’s churchyard regulations, which can be read in full overleaf, are based upon these.

 A part of a churchyard’s function is to be a place of rest for the deceased it is understood that it should be a place that people can come to remember their loved ones. The PCC’s rules are there to ensure that our churchyard remains a peaceful place and that the churchyard can fulfil its other functions as a historical communal space and haven of biodiversity.

1. The cremated remains of the following persons, and no others, may be interred in the garden of remembrance namely:


(a) persons resident in the parish;

(b) persons whose names are on the church electoral roll of the parish;

(c) persons dying in the parish;

(d) any other person to the interment of whose remains the incumbent/ priest-in-charge consents and, in giving such consent, the incumbent shall have regard to any general guidance given by the parochial church council.

2. Ashes may not be buried in a container of any description. Ashes are to be poured into the ground, from the container in which they are brought to the burial site, by the minister commiƫng them to the earth and then covered with soil.

3. The place of interment shall not be marked by any memorial or otherwise but the personal representatives of any person whose remains are interred in the Garden of Remembrance or Churchyard may, on payment of such charge as the parochial church council shall from time to time prescribe, require an appropriate entry to be made in the Book of Remembrance maintained in the church. Existing memorials in the Churchyard may be amended or repaired by the legal owners at their expense with the permission of Incumbent/ priest-in-charge. The PCC reserves the right to allow extraordinary exceptions at its discretion.

4. No artificial flowers or foliage may be laid anywhere in the Garden of Remembrance or Churchyard. Flowers may not be placed in vases or other containers. All flowers and wreaths placed on the plot may be removed when they are dead or wilted. No mementos, toys, windchimes or other objects may be placed in the Churchyard. Items may be removed and disposed of by persons authorised by the PCC.

5. The place of interment may be used for the interment of other ashes after a lapse of 30 years, always provided that reasonable attempts shall be made by the parochial church council to enquire from members of the family of the deceased whether they object and, should such objection be made, re-use will be deferred for a further 30 years.

Fr. Adam Ransom

Willingdon Parochial Church Council, Chair.

June 2023

Latest edition April 2020

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