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Buying a grave

Craven District Council manages Skipton Cemetery located at Waltonwrays Cemetery on Carleton Road in Skipton and Ingleton Cemetery.

Provisions are available for both full burial and for the burial of cremated remains at both Cemeteries.  There are half graves available at Waltonwrays Cemetery for the sole purpose of interring cremated remains, or for the interment of an infant.

A new area is being developed for a Children's Memorial Garden in a quiet area of Waltonwrays Cemetery where infants can be buried or their cremated remains strewn and a memorial placed.

When can a grave be purchased?

A grave may be purchased at any time but is generally purchased by the Funeral Director on behalf of the relatives following a bereavement. It is usual for the nearest surviving relative of a deceased person to be nominated as the purchaser.

Types of graves available

  1. Private - Lawn section - the graves in these areas may be turfed over and kept maintained at no expense to the owner. Alternatively either the Council can provide and plant the grave or prepare the grave ready for the grave owner to maintain.  A memorial may be placed on the grave if the relatives wish.
  2. Half graves - refer to Private grave, as above.  Up to six sets of  cremated remains may be interred in these graves.
  3. Public graves - no headstones or memorials are allowed on these graves. If a burial in such a grave is requested we would allocate a grave for this purpose, to accommodate 3 interments.  It will be the Council's decision as regards who is interred in the grave.
  4. Plaques 15x20 inch - up to 4 set of cremated remains may be interred. These are located on Section G (Waltonwrays only).
  5. Plaques 15x15 inch - up to 2 sets of cremated remains may be interred. These are located in the Garden of Remembrance (Waltonwrays only). No new plaques are available in this Garden.

Some frequently asked questions

Q: What happens when the owner dies?

A: When the grant owner dies, the Right of Burial will pass to the heirs of the estate. To enable the transfer of ownership to be arranged, the heirs of the estate should notify the Council in writing. It is strongly advised that the grave deeds be transferred, as this will avoid difficulties in the future if the grave has to be re-opened or an inscription is to be added to the memorial.

Q: When do I receive the Grave Deed?

A: After the purchase of a new grave, the person nominated as the grave owner will receive the document, called the 'Grant of Exclusive Right of Burial' within six weeks of the purchase. This Grant or 'Grave Deed' reserves the owner the right of burial in the grave specified.

Q: What can I place on the grave?

A: Relatives may wish to carry out planting on the grave and to maintain it themselves, in which case the Council will prepare the grave space for this purpose. Alternatively, the Council can provide and plant summer and winter flowering plants on your behalf.

To enable the cemetery sections to be maintained to a reasonable standard and to open graves for future burials no railings, fences, edging stones or chippings etc will be permitted within each grave space.

Where a grave has not been tended over a period of time, it will be seeded over and maintained by the Council. All railings, fences, edging stones or chippings will be removed.

Q: What memorials can be placed on the grave?

A: Memorials, including headstones, vases, desk tablets and kerbs (restricted size) may be placed on a grave, subject to approval by the Council.  To ensure the safety of the memorial and cemetery users, all memorials must be fixed to NAMM Standards. An application form must be submitted to the Council giving details of the proposed dimensions, wording and fixing method, and no memorial can be fixed until written approval has been given. It is the graves owner's responsibility to maintain any memorial on the grave in a safe condition.

The co-operation of grave owners and relatives is requested when the lawn area of their grave is needed for the temporary placing of earth when an adjoining grave is re-opened for a burial. Following the burial the grave will be re-instated.

Q: What happens to the grave following the burial?

A: Following an interment the ground will continue to settle for six months. As soon as practicable the grave will be levelled, grassed over and maintained by the Council with regular grass cutting.

Q: When I purchase the grave, do I own the land?

A: No, the popular belief that the land itself is purchased is incorrect. The purchaser acquires the exclusive right of burial in the grave but the land and the responsibility for its management remains with the Council. The exclusive right of burial is for 30 years, which can be extended for a further period of time once this has lapsed.