-

Memorial 'Topple' Testing

Important information if you are a plot owner

Thornbury Town Council are carrying out an inspection 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 are writing to all affected plot owners individually to inform them of the situation and give them information on the options available to them.  Please 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 Cemetery staff – contact details are above.

If your plot has been affected by the testing, you should shortly receive a letter giving you further information.  Please note that any repairs or refixing of memorials need to be carried out by a BRAMM, NAMM or RQMF registered memorial mason in line with British Standard BS8415.  More information on this will be contained in the letter.

Further information on the legal requirements relating to this process can be found in the Ministry of Justice document entitled “Managing the Safety of Burial Ground Memorials” which can either be found here: safety-burial-grounds

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.

Managing the Safety of Burial Ground Memorials

Thank you.