Cemetery Friends - caring for the future of our cemeteries

image courtesy Friends of Beckett Street Cemetery, Leeds   

The National Federation of Cemetery Friends  represents groups of volunteers interested in conserving cemeteries large and small. Our associate members include Trusts, councils etc who manage cemeteries and burials and individual members who are not part of a Friends group but share in our values.

The Cemetery Friends give of their time in clearing and maintaining areas often working with local ecology groups to maintain a balance between wildlife and heritage. Some groups have restored memorials and chapels.


In many cemeteries the Friends provide guided walks and other events and work with English Heritage and other organisations to provide Open Days and special events.

The Federation firmly supports safety in cemeteries both for the volunteers working within and members of the public visiting. NFCF has played a major role in persuading central government and local authorities that a balanced and non confrontational approach should be taken in assessing the safety of headstones and kerbs. The wholesale destruction of graves and memorials on the vague umbrella of health and safety is unnecessary in many cases and we are grateful that firmer guidelines have been issued to local authorities stating that pressure testers are not the first route in assessing safety. In a thirty year period there have been 6 fatalities [in some of those cases of the vandals who were attempting to move heavy stonework] but in general cemeteries are safe havens enjoyed by the visiting public.

English Heritage has produced an excellent publication Paradise Restored [and in February 2011 additional guidance leaflets] and we have our own publication Saving Cemeteries.
site updated 1st April 2014

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Our handbook is full of advice and tips    The National Federation of Cemetery Friends        © 2011/12/13
Copies available from the Secretary