Natural or Woodland (Green) Burial Grounds are similar to cemeteries, however, with one key difference, they are managed according to ecologically sound principles, to create beautiful, nature-rich areas without the formality and memorials of traditional cemeteries. Our burial grounds are places full of natural life and offer an ideal environment for peaceful reflection, within nature.
Natural Burials are the only real, sustainable alternative to all other forms of conventional burial or cremation. Whilst we recognise that cremation is a popular or maybe even necessary option for many, we at the Natural Burial Company firmly believe that a natural burial is far less damaging to the environment. This is backed up by evidence from numerous academic studies.
Visitors are welcome at any time to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of our burial grounds and to watch the developing wildlife habitats. We believe that your visits will provide you with a suitable place for reflection as well as bringing comfort to you and your relatives.
Our natural burial grounds do not have traditional headstones, but there are several other fitting ways to memorialise a loved one. Graves can be planted with a tree to create a natural, living memorial and marked with a post and slate plaque engraved with an appropriate inscription. Over time the burial ground will slowly return to its natural state and become a refuge for wildlife. What more fitting way to complete the cycle of life?
We also offer other forms of memorialisation that are fully in keeping with our aim to establish areas of natural beauty where wildlife can flourish long into the future, either with bird nesting boxes, bat roosting boxes, nature homes and oak benches.
We must prohibit the planting of non-native seeds or plants on graves, as it would prevent the generation of a natural landscape in keeping with the local ecology of each of our burial grounds. And we reserve the right to remove any inappropriate plants without prior notice. Please refer to the Rules and Regulations that govern our burial grounds for further details.
We of course encourage native species to establish themselves in our burial grounds and can provide wildflower seed mixes for sowing on graves.
Our Commitment to the Environment
By choosing a green, woodland or natural burial every one of us will be contributing to the establishment, expansion and preservation of local ecosystems capable of sustaining a rich variety of natural biodiversity, and also preventing the harmful practices of conventional funeral practices from damaging our environment any further.
Adopting these principles will mean that we can all contribute in our own way to halting the effects of local environmental degradation, and on a wider scale climate change itself. By taking life, through natural burial nature has found a way to give back life, as long as we all choose to do our bit.
For instance, cremation uses large amounts of fossil fuels which releases CO2 as well as significantly contributing to the overall levels of dangerous toxins emitted into the atmosphere. Whilst we recognise there is a place for cremation in today’s mix of funeral practices, we believe that green, woodland or natural burial is a far more sustainable alternative.
Natural or green burials / woodland burials not only use fewer resources, they help to preserve the delicate balance between us and nature, significantly enhancing the future of our environment long into the future, but crucially they also offers better value to each and every one of us that choose this option.
The Natural Burial Company, through our practices in establishing a burial ground and through our daily operations, constantly strives to improve and enhance the local environment, encouraging natural biodiversity, often providing life where a sterile ecology had previously existed, refurbishing derelict land or simply enriching immeasurably the surrounding local ecosystem.
Our light touch ethos means that wildlife and the flora and fauna at our burial grounds are left to flourish, very much in their natural state. Even our wildflower meadows self seed each summer and return to full bloom in the following spring, with little or no intervention from us.
Minimal maintenance is required, enough to leave the grounds looking presentable. However, not the manicured lawns and surroundings, lines of headstones or graves and sterile ecosystems that are found at conventional cemeteries.
We seek to have as little an impact as possible on our environment, minimising the infrastructure required at each ground, whilst still being able to provide a quality service for all. We provide exceptional value, particularly when compared to more conventional funeral practices, but also offer exceptional quality in terms of our complete range of products and services and our commitment to helping the bereaved wherever and whenever we can.
In choosing a natural burial you are helping to leave a lasting legacy above and beyond the more obvious benefits that following a more sustainable and ethical path of natural burial ordinarily bring. We really are all doing our bit…