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We can offer advice on a range of information about burials.

If you would like to speak with a member of the Bereavement Services team to discuss burial arrangements privately, you can:

Buying a grave

When you buy a grave, the ground itself remains the property of the Council but you are given the 'Right' to open the grave for burial and the 'Right' to place and maintain a memorial.

The exclusive 'Right' of burial is granted for 100 years for an adult grave, and 25 years for graves in the Cremated Remains Gardens and Babies' Burial Gardens. Once expired, the 'Rights' can be extended.

The exclusive 'Right to Erect and Maintain a Memorial' is granted for 30 years, starting from when you install the memorial. A memorial mason will issue a Certificate of Compliance which will run for the same period of time. Once expired, the 'Rights' can be extended for periods of 5 years at a time, provided the memorial meets the required safety standards.

Visit our memorials page for more information.


'Rights' to a grave


The transfer of 'Rights' to a grave, is a legal process which determines the individuals that have entitlement in legal documents, such as a Will, Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration.

If you do not have any legal documents, we can prepare a Statutory Declaration for you. This must include all blood-line next-of-kin and you must then swear before a Solicitor or Commissioner for Oaths.

If the grave is to be opened for the burial of the owner (Grantee), the necessary transfer form and information will be sent after the burial to the person who has made the arrangements.


The assignment of 'Rights' is where a living Grantee can choose to completely transfer ownership of the 'Rights' to a grave to someone else.

Addition of names

The ownership of a grave can be shared, and the addition of names can be made by the living Grantee.


Natural burials

A natural burial or green burial is intended to be kinder to the environment. The burial area becomes part of the landscape, providing a natural habitat for wildlife. When choosing a natural burial, you should consider using materials and products that naturally bio-degrade such as cardboard and wicker coffins and woollen shrouds.

We do not have a natural burial ground but we hope to offer this option to families in the near future.

Visit the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management for more information.


Personalising a grave space

We do not allow fixed kerbs in any section of our cemeteries. We appreciate that people may want to place personal items on a grave and we offer a designated area at the head of the grave for this.

By containing tributes within this designated area we can ensure that:

  • funeral directors, coffin bearers and mourners have a clear pathway to the graveside
  • families and visitors with mobility problems have easy access
  • the management and maintenance of graves is unrestricted

If a grave has kerbs or items placed on the whole of the grave space and a further burial is required, it is the responsibility of the family to remove these items before we are able to prepare the grave for burial.

View our personalising a grave space pages for more information.

Durham Road Cemetery (extension) grave options

The new extension to Durham Road Cemetery offers a range of grave types which can be personalised. 



Exhumation is the removal of human remains from their place of burial. It is illegal to disturb human remains, including cremated remains, without obtaining necessary legal permission by Licence or Bishops Faculty and in some circumstances both will be required.

Before considering exhumation, we would strongly recommend that family members speak to our Bereavement Services team. We will be able to advise on the procedures followed at an exhumation, cost and the possibility of additional emotional distress to the family.

Contact Bereavement Services on email for more information.


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