Dear Parishioners and members of Whitburn Parish Church community,
Following a series of requests for memorial plaques and stones to be installed in the churchyard here in Whitburn, the PCC has sought the advice from the Archdeacon and the Diocesan Advisory Committee.
From this and from discussion at a series of PCC meetings, it has been agreed to seek approval for the establishment of a Garden of Remembrance here in the church yard.
To achieve this we have to apply for a ‘Faculty’ from the Consistory Court of the Church.
The document attached is the proposal for this. We urge you to read the proposal and then speak with anyone you know who might have an interest in it.
If you or they would like to discuss the proposal or implications of the proposal, then they should contact Revd Ian Davies or Michael O’Brien, churchwarden, in the first instance.
The 28-day consultation period for this begins on 17th September and ends on 15th October.
Any concerns about the proposal or objections to the proposal should be with the Churchwardens before the 15th October.
Thank you for your help in this matter.
Michael O’Brien, Roly Humphrey. Churchwardens
On behalf of the PCC
Following the receipt of guidance the from the Diocesan Advisory Committee, the PCC will submit the proposal below to the Consistory Court for a ‘Faculty’ to create a Garden of Remembrance and a Book of Remembrance in the church yard.
In this respect the PCC is required to consult with parishioners for 28 days prior to the Faculty application. This consultation will begin on 17th September and run until 15th October.
The PCC is also required to keep the Local Authority informed of their proposals; noting that the churchyard is ‘closed’, under the care of the Local Authority and we seek to maintain this status.
Anyone who has an interest or concern or has a view on the proposals below should speak with, or write to, the Churchwardens in the first instance within the time set in the consultation period.
The area proposed for the Garden of Remembrance is to be the land adjacent to the South Wall and North Wall of the churchyard. It is to avoid areas under trees and so the garden will not be continuous, rather a series of four spaces, (two on each wall).
The area will be:
- South Wall -running from the end of the iron railing to the east of this wall, 1-metre in breadth and 15-metres running west.
- North Wall- Starting 7-metres west of the east wall railing, 1-metre in breadth and running westwards for 100-metres ending before the wooden gate in the wall.
- It is proposed that wooden or stone boundary pegs be place at the outer edge of the garden area to help demarcate the space.
- It is proposed that a plan drawn with each plot given a number/letter identity so that records can be maintained of each plot as it is used. This document will be held in the church safe until all the plots are used, when it would be deposited with other Parish Records in the Diocesan Record Office
- The garden will be divided into 75cm square plots, central to the 1 metre breadth of the space uniform stone carving would be ensured by the use of a recognised, recommended stonemason, and incorporate a simple Name, Dates in a specified style/font/size. It is suggested that Flat ledger stones of sandstone, level with the turf be used as memorial stones.
- The flat ledger stones of sandstone of around 30cm x 30 cm x 10cm would be used as memorial stones, replacing the existing wall plaques and would ensure that the memorials would be standard and unobtrusive – meaning that the visual impact and physical impact would not detract from the aesthetic of the wall and would not impede any grass-cutting.
- The installation of the memorial stones would be completed after an application to the Vicar, through completion of appropriate document and reference to the rules set out in a policy created by the PCC and ratified by the DAC.
- The installation of any remains would be strictly prohibited.
- A Book of Remembrance for use in the recording of memorials placed in the Garden of Remembrance would be kept in the church safe.
- It is suggested that naturalised bulbs would be preferable to vases of flowers or floral tributes to avoid clutter and reduce maintenance. These would be spaced between the plots.
- Artificial flowers will not be permitted.
The PCC has brought to the attention of the DAC the present wall plaques fixed to walls around the churchyard.
The DAC will need to consider the legitimacy of these plaques.
The PCC, after the result of a ‘Faculty’ has been received, will seek to act upon the guidance from the DAC / ‘Faculty’
The PCC seeks to consult with parishioners and with the families of those already commemorated in the church yard (as indicated by existing memorial wall plaques). Their views and interests will be sought along with the views of any people who wish to use the facility of The Garden of Remembrance.