Memorials at the cemetery

Memorial Safety Testing

Important information if you are a plot owner

Thornbury Town Council routinely carries out inspections of all memorials at Thornbury Cemetery. As a burial authority, the Town Council has no option but to conduct this testing. This is not a Thornbury Town Council initiated policy, but is a legal obligation.

Some memorials that fail the test must be laid down. This is necessary when they are deemed unstable enough to pose a risk of falling. The proper process for determining this is very specific and Town Council staff have been trained by the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management in order to carry out the inspections appropriately. It is also a requirement to immediately lay down the memorial as soon as it fails inspection, as we cannot leave erect a memorial stone that has been assessed as at risk of falling.

Thornbury Town Council completely understands the distress and upset that may be caused by the unexpected laying down of memorials and sympathise with plot holders.

We write to all affected plot owners individually to inform them of the situation and give them information on the options available to them. It is therefore important that you let us know if your contact details/address have changed since you first purchased the plot.

Please be aware that our Cemetery staff are simply doing their jobs in line with legal requirements. Our staff are not responsible for the legal situation regarding memorial stones and any abuse towards them will not be tolerated. If you have any concerns about the situation, please contact Thornbury Town Council rather than discussing them with the Cemetery site team.

If during testing your plot has been identified as one where its condition and safety has changed, you should shortly afterwards receive a letter giving you further information. Please note that any repairs or refixing of memorials need to be carried out by a BRAMM or NAMM accredited memorial mason in line with British Standard BS8415. A list of accredited masons can be found on the websites of the British Register of Accredited Memorial Masons and the National Association of Memorial Masons.

Thornbury Town Council is asking that any concerned plot owners contact the Town Hall rather than talking to Cemetery staff who have unfortunately experienced some abusive behaviour when carrying out this testing.

Thank you.


ICCM logo
Thornbury Town Council is a member of the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management, which means we work in line with their guidelines and best practice.