Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Here you will find some commonly asked questions we are asked when people are looking at arranging their natural, or green burial at Westall Park. If you cannot find the answers to your questions here then please don’t hesitate to speak to us in person using the contact details oposite.
Q.. Are there areas reserved for particular religions and is the ground consecrated?
A.. No. The park does not follow any particular faith and interments already cover a variety of religions. Usually a minister of the particular religious faith will undertake a formal blessing or similar.
Q.. What are the normal hours of opening?
A.. The gate is opened every day of the year from 9am and locked at 5pm. Our office is open during normal weekday office hours 9am to 5pm, excluding bank holidays. We can make specific out of hours evening appointments where visits during normal hours are impossible.
Q.. Can you please enlarge on managed woodland burial?
A.. Traditional graveyards or cemeteries still largely reflect style and needs rooted over a century ago. Sadly they are not standing the test of time in terms of their appeal, their maintenance or permanency of occupation. In our more mobile, longer living, more ecologically aware, and arguably more caring society most of us are still motivated by the same wishes, to be disposed of with dignity, to be remembered in a caring way yet not to be a burden to those that follow. Clearly the traditional options are not meeting these needs-small wonder that mourners often come away “depressed” rather than “uplifted”. The “managed woodland burial” provides a credible and desirable alternative spanning these extremes. It allows wide choice in method, accurate and permanent location of interments – all in an environment where nature is encouraged to thrive.
Q.. Please explain your policy on the duration of burial rights granted?
A.. This is a major consideration. In many cemeteries the right to burial may be limited to 50 or even 35 years. In effect the cemetery only “leases” the plot for that period. As we all are tending to live longer this means that succeeding relatives may be faced with the unpalatable prospect of needing to re-purchase the plot (for a further period) or losing control of any on going use to which the grave area may be put. As far as legally possible Westall Park cannot be used for any other purpose into the future
Q.. Do you recommend the use of particular funeral directors?
A.. The majority of interments at Westall Park use funeral directors, most of whom will be able to meet your needs since the procedure is little different from their normal services. We will not recommend individual funeral directors but nearly all local funeral directors have carried out interments at Westall Park and we can help individuals locate a suitable funeral director within their locality.
Q.. What about safeguards?
A.. Full computerised records are kept with copies of all records (including maps) being stored off site. Westall Park has public liability insurance in place.
Q.. What are the benefits of prepayment and what happens should I subsequently change my mind?
A.. There are 4 main benefits and a host of minor considerations:
- Particularly for those who enjoy a well ordered life there can be great peace of mind in the certainty of a known and preferred final resting place.
- It enables prudent planning for other next of kin in side by side or “family” group interments.
- It reduces the burden of decision, organisation (and part cost) on relatives at their time of stress.
- It guarantees reservation of any chosen spot or “family” areas. Unfortunately, Westall Park doesn’t have limitless space and its “woodland burial” concept is proving to be very attractive in comparison to conventional cemetery burial.
Other considerations may include inclusion into your will, protection against price inflation, it can be linked with any funeral insurance scheme, it assists in pre-planning with your chosen funeral director and so on.
Should you change your mind then Westall Park Ltd will guarantee to re-purchase your unused plot or plots at 1/2 of the original price paid.
Q.. Why can’t everybody have a tree?
A.. Access to reserved graves are required and also tree roots cannot be allowed to encroach into a reserved grave. Managed tree planting ensures that no barren ground areas develop which can happen in the future if trees are too close together.
Q.. How many interments have you had?
A.. Since Westall Park opened in March 1997 there have been well over 1400 burials and reservations and over 2000 Ashes burials and reservations.