trees planted over the graves?
No, they are not. At the Arbory Trust, people are buried in
glades surrounded by trees rather than underneath them. Trees
can become diseased or struck by lightning, serious problems
can arise if trees have to be dug out, and tree roots can
also interfere with graves.
graves be marked?
The graves may
be marked with wooden plaques only, which will biodegrade
over a period of years. They may be no larger than an A3 piece
of paper, and must not be mounted on a stake or post- they
must be placed flush to the ground.
No other form of
marker is permitted. Ultimately the graves will be mown over
to form part of the natural woodland and glades. See 'Rules
of the Burial Ground'.
I or my family know where a grave is once it has blended into
All grave locations
are regularly surveyed and recorded by the Arbory Trust.
Are single and double graves available?
Graves can be single or double depth, though double depth is not possible in certain glades.
is the wood managed and what plans are there for the future?
We are not trying
to create a park- Arbory Trust woods really will be woods.
The woodland will be managed for the benefit of people, plants
and animals, using sustainable and ecological principles,
and sufficient funds will be set aside to ensure ongoing maintenance
costs are covered once the burial ground is full.
any maintenance of the graves?
Within a few weeks
of a grave being filled, a mixture of grass and wildflower
seed will be scattered. Further seed will be scattered as
and when it is deemed appropriate and such growth should not
be removed or otherwise deterred. The glades themselves will only be mown
entirely once, in late September. Gardening of the graves is
not permitted- see Rules of the Burial
Ground and Ground Maintenance.
Trust woodlands be open all the year around?
Arbory Trust woodlands
are open 365 days a year. The gates are never locked, but
PLEASE CLOSE THE GATES WHEN YOU LEAVE
AND ASK OTHERS TO DO THE SAME. This helps to minimise
access by deer!
of coffin can be used?
You may use any
type of biodegradable coffin or casket, or a shroud. There
are many options available- all Funeral Directors have plenty
of information, and a simple internet search yields good results.
We will accept
embalmed bodies only in very exceptional circumstances, such
as repatriation, given the toxic nature of the materials used
in the process.
a Memorial Book?
Yes. When someone
dies, we hope their families will sit down and write about
them- what they did, what they liked, whom they loved. This
is really a tribute to their life. All these tributes are
kept and bound in the Memorial Books, which are available
for viewing in the Memorial Lodge when open. See Memorial
Lodge open for general visiting?
The Lodge is open
every Wednesday and you are most welcome to drop
in from 10am to 2pm with any questions,and we'll be happy to help. See the
Memorial Lodge page.
Can I put
a bench at Barton? I have seen several.
No more benches will be permitted in the current phase
of development. We are anxious to keep the right balance for
the woodland, and hope you will understand that we cannot
allow a bench near every grave.
Do I have to use
a Funeral Director?
No. It is not required but you may find it helpful to use their
services to assist with all matters that arise following a death. All local Funeral Directors are very familiar with
Barton Glebe,and should be happy to help you, and we will readily assist
Funeral Directors from other parts of the country with any
arrangements you wish to make at Barton. We can advise families on how to do everything themselves so just ask.
Further advice is also available from the Natural Death Centre and the Good Funeral Guide website.
Do I need
It is often a good idea (although it is not required) that you have someone to direct
the funeral, whether they be a member of the clergy, a Humanist
minister, a Civil Funeral celebrant or other person not directly
involved with the family. Bear in mind that emotions run high
and it is often better to have someone other than a family
member in charge of events. We do ask that all funerals are
conducted with dignity and respect.
prepares the grave?
For reasons of
health and safety, only those approved of by The Arbory Trust
and who are appropriately qualified and insured may prepare
graves at Barton. Depending on the size, location and accessibility
of each grave location, graves will be prepared and subsequently
filled with a mechanical digger or hand digging as required.
a standard size?
Each grave is prepared
to meet the size of the casket or coffin. In exceptional circumstances
there may be an additional charge for a grave space where
dimensions exceed what is considered to be within a normal
Is it possible
to have funerals at the weekends?
We believe it is
important for friends and families to be able to visit the
woodlands at weekends and on public holidays without worrying
about coming across a funeral taking place. Therefore we do
not allow funerals at the weekends, unless there are very
Can I walk
my dog at Barton?
You are welcome
to walk with your dogs, but they must be on leads and you
must ensure they do not cause any damage.
You MUST clear up after them, out of consideration
for other users.
Can I drive
my car further than the car park?
No. It is important
to preserve the rides as grass areas, in keeping with the
woodland setting. The only exception is for funerals. Any
special requests should be brought to the staff, who will
it is wet or inclement on the day of a funeral?
Thought must always
be given to the fact that Barton Glebe is woodland, and access
to Glades is via grass rides and paths. Appropriate footwear
should be worn, and this often means wellies or walking boots
following periods of rain or snow, as the terrain can be muddy
or soft. High heels are not advisable at any time.
I make a complaint?
In the first instance
please do contact the Administrator, who will always be ready
to help resolve any problem you may have. If that is not possible,
you can write to the Trustees of the Arbory Trust, Bishop
Woodford House, Barton Road, Ely CB7 4DX and your complaint
will be dealt with as soon as possible.
you may refer your complaint to the Association
of Natural Burial Grounds.
I leave feedback?
As an established
member of the Association of Natural Burial Grounds (ANBG),
we are required to offer you the opportunity to leave feedback
which can be completed on line. The ANBG
are also happy to hear from you directly with any comments
you may have.