Memorials on graves
Memorials are allowed on all types of graves. An application for a permit is made to the Council by the stonemason you select to undertake any work.
It is normally only the owner with the exclusive rights to the grave who can apply for authorisation to place a memorial on a grave. However this is not always the case; please contact the Councils' Cemetery Section to discuss your wishes if the owner of the rights to the grave are deceased themselves or cannot be traced.
A charge is levied to place a new memorial on a grave, or for additional inscriptions or for a replacement memorial; the charge changes each year and varies according to the type of memorial and grave type. The charge levied helps to pay for any future inspections of the memorials the Council is required to carry out periodically.
For current fees please see burial fees and charges.
The Council is not the owner of the grave memorial and therefore is not responsible for any damage to it.
Due to legislation, it is illegal to remove a fixed memorial from a grave without the Council's written permission.
The rules relating to children's graves in the children's sections allow for a wider range of ornaments and personal memorials.
Please do not plant trees or shrubs or put up fences or surrounds on graves in the lawn areas. Graves in these sections are designated headstone only areas and such items may have to be removed.
There are specific rules on the type of materials and design for memorials for St. Nicolas Churchyard. This is because it is a churchyard and comes under the Bishop of Chichester Diocese who have more strict regulations than the Council for memorials on graves in churchyards.
For more details see: St. Nicolas Churchyard.
Depending on the type of grave, there is a maximum size permitted for the memorial. Please contact the Cemetery Section for further information. Alternatively, details can be found in Appendix 1 and 2, regulations 25 and 33, of the the Cemetery Cemetery Rules and Regulations.
Generally, temporary memorials such as flower vases, wooden crosses and plaques can be left on a grave and if not permanently fixed do not require a permit from the Council.
However, please be aware that there are specific rules with regard to the types of adornments that may be placed on a grave.
If the temporary memorial is excessive or is detrimental to the maintenance of the Cemetery, you may be asked to remove it.
For advice on what constitutes a temporary memorial, please contact the Cemetery Section.
We do not have a strict policy on wording on memorials except that the words must not be offensive or breach copyright and must relate to the person or persons interred in the grave.
It is possible to commemorate someone not interred at the same time though, please contact the Cemetery Section for guidance.
Contact Cemetery Service