Memorial Headstones

A memorial headstone is widely recognised as a way of commemorating someone’s life, creating an historical record, and providing a focal point for family and friends to visit. The council is committed to offering the widest possible choice of designs available and that your memorial should be fixed to the highest standards.

Ensure you will be able to obtain permission to erect a memorial

In accordance with English Law, the city council may grant permission only to the owner of the Right of Burial (the person named on the Deed of Grant) or another person who has the owner’s written authority to do so. If you are in any doubt as to who the owner of the grave is, please check with the cemetery office in the first instance.

Contact an approved Memorial Mason

It is important to us that when we decide to set up a list of approved suppliers for our public that we have taken the time to make sure they are the best we can find. To that end, we have introduced a clear and open process of assessing our Stone Masons. The process includes the following checks:

  • Registration with BRAMM
    National Association of Memorial Masons
  • Registration with NAMM
  • Registration and detail with Company House
  • Insurance checks
    • Employer
    • Public Liability
    • Professional Indemnity
    • Product Liability
  • Working to BS8415

Approved Stone Masons

Inspect the work of individual masons and obtain a personal recommendation

Visit the cemeteries and examine their work in situ. Masons are obliged to identify their work by inscribing their names on the back of the memorials, so several examples may be evident in the vicinity of your grave.

Having decided on a particular mason and chosen your memorial:-

Ask your mason to FORMALLY APPLY to the Cemetery Office BEFORE you confirm your order.

You should present the Deed of Grant of the grave to the mason to show the name of the person entitled to place a memorial (or additional inscription) on it. You will be required to provide additional proof that you are now entitled to place a memorial (or additional inscription) on the grave if you are not the person named on the deed. Until permission has been obtained for the design and inscription of the memorial and ownership of the grave confirmed, do not enter into any financial agreement with a Stonemason.

Ensure you obtain a COPY OF YOUR ORDER, which includes:

  1. Assurance that the memorial can be removed if the grave is reopened and any costs involved for doing so.
  2. A photograph or specification of the memorial you are purchasing.
  3. Details of the inscription you have requested.
  4. The agreed price.
  5. The date of completion.

Insurance cover

Although the risk of damage to your memorial is very low, it is strongly recommended that you take out an insurance policy to cover any eventualities. Your chosen stonemason will most likely be able to assist you with purchasing the appropriate cover.

Your responsibilities

The memorial remains the property of the owner and does not in time revert to the council.

Should the memorial become unstable and cause damage to persons or property, any claim that may arise would be against the owner of the memorial and not the council. The council has no liability for damage unless it can be proven beyond all reasonable doubt that the damage has been caused by cemetery staff during ground maintenance operations. The council has the authority to remove memorials after the expiry of the right of burial in the grave and can take action to reduce the risk of an unsafe memorial causing injury to visitors. A fee is charged, should this occur, at the prevailing rate in the council’s published fees and charges.