Safety first says council as part of cemetery programme

 A churchyard in Fenland

Safety tests are being carried out at cemeteries across Fenland as part of an ongoing programme. - Credit: FDC

Tests are being carried out at cemeteries across Fenland in a bid to maintain public safety. 

Memorial safety inspections are being taken by trained staff, on behalf of Fenland Council (FDC), on all memorials and headstones as part of an ongoing programme. 

The programme helps to ensure memorials and headstones are not at risk of falling over and possibly injuring someone.

Councillor Peter Murphy, FDC’s portfolio holder for cemeteries, said: “We appreciate that testing and making safe memorials may cause upset to bereaved families.  

“We apologise for any inconvenience, but the safety of those people visiting cemeteries has to be our priority.” 

Public notices are placed at cemeteries before any action is taken. 

Any memorials that are unstable will be laid down, while others with some movement will be made safe by securing temporary support while a family member is traced. 

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An FDC spokesperson said: “Although memorials remain the responsibility of the family, the council has a legal duty to ensure the safety of visitors to its cemeteries. 

“Memorial owners who find their headstone laid down can employ the services of a memorial mason to have the memorial safely reinstated.”