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Memorial safety testing set to start in High Peak cemeteries

Published on 4 March 2024

Ensuring the safety of everyone visiting or working in cemeteries across the High Peak is a priority for the Borough Council.

A rolling programme of memorial safety testing is in place to assess the stability of memorials and, where necessary, put measures in place to address any safety issues identified.

Work will be taking place in our cemeteries and the closed churchyards we are responsible for across the Borough over the next couple of months starting at Hope cemetery.

A Faculty Notice application has been made to Derby Diocese and work can only begin in closed churchyards and consecrated areas once this is approved.

Trained employees will carry out the assessment work and, if necessary, carry out temporary measures to make memorials safe using a stake and a band. Notices will be posted detailing the reasons why the memorial has been assessed as unsafe together with contact details for further information.

Council Leader, Councillor Anthony Mckeown, said: "Our cemeteries and closed churchyards have a number of visitors and we need to ensure that we keep them safe places for people to visit.

"I would like to reassure everyone with memorials to loved ones in our cemeteries that the testing will be carried out respectfully and sensitively.

"The sole aim of the assessments is to keep people safe. Every effort will be made to contact the families of the memorials affected and we will offer advice on necessary repairs.

"I'd like to thank people for their understanding whilst we carry out this essential work."

If a memorial remains unrepaired after six months, it will be partially sunk for safety until the family arranges for a registered mason to carry out the repairs.

You can find out more about memorial safety testing on our website where you'll also find the answers to some frequently asked questions.