Cemetery Friends - caring for the future of our cemeteries

   Home      About the Federation/Contact Us

About the Federation

Image courtesy Dorothy Marshall Friends of Belgrave Cemetery, Leicester
The formation of the National Federation of Cemetery Friends [NFCF] was the result of heritage  and conservation minded groups concerned about the decline in care of our Victorian cemeteries meeting like minded volunteers. The threat to these important burial grounds from developers and negligent owners and managers of the cemeteries was the motivation to the conservationists to make a positive and practical stand. In some cases local groups formed specifically to influence public opinion against a threat to a particular cemetery and later started researching the heritage and "promoting" the site with guided walks. In other cases the friends formed to either preserve the wildlife and fauna or to make the cemetery more widely appreciated by taking walks, publishing guide books and giving talks.The Federation was established in 1986 mainly from London based groups and now has members in many parts of the country. The cemetery care organisations have now spread to an international level such as the Association of Significant Cemeteries in Europe and we have associate members in Australia and New Zealand.                                    
Many cemeteries have become sanctuaries for rare plants, fungi, fauna and animals. As pressure grows on the adequate provision of burial space in the UK, the subject of cemeteries is now coming back onto the political agenda. The Federation works with the Ministry of Justice [Coroners' Division] and other NGO's in considering provisions for proposed new burial laws in the UK.  
Members of the Federation meet annually for the AGM and the venue varies each year with a mix of provincial and London based locations with the added incentive of a guided walk around the local cemetery either before or after the formality of the AGM. Members welcome the opportunity to network, visit stands of other societies and learn of updates on current issues such as monument safety or the proposed new burial laws. New members are made very welcome and often long term contact and friendship is established with other Friends' groups often resulting in exchange visits to their local cemeteries.  


webmaster John Avery

 Contact us
Webmaster John G. Avery  contact
The Executive Committee

Secretary  Gwyneth Stokes 42 Chestnut Grove, South Croydon CR2 7 LH  contact          

              Chairman Arthur Tait   contact                       Treasurer Carol Stevenson  contact

Newsletter editor Ann Wilkinson contact

The committee is made up of a small panel of members who act as a resource in discussing issues such as monument safety, burial law reform and the future care of cemeteries. The committee  includes Robert Stephenson [Kensal Green and Brompton] , Carol Stevenson [Nunhead] [treasurer]. Lynda Kitching [Beckett St Leeds] and Geoff & Emer Seamark [Brompton] under the chairmanship of Arthur Tait [Brompton], Gwyneth Stokes [Nunhead] as secretary, Ann Wilkinson [Lister Lane, Halifax] [newsletter editor.] The committee is elected at each AGM by the membership.

The Funerary Monuments Group was set up in 2007 following a proposal at the 2006 AGM held at Nunhead. One objective is: To advise members of the Federation
on all matters pertaining to the safety, ownership and protection of monuments and other related issues. Please see the separate page on this site.
[Image Cross of Sacrifice courtesy Ford Park Cemetery Trust]

Types of Membership.

The majority of our membership is formed by voluntary groups normally with the prefix friends in their title [but there are variations].

We have associate members such as cemetery trusts who manage cemeteries and local authorities plus individual members who may not be in a formal group. Other members are accepted if the EC consider the membership would benefit the Federation. Carol Stevenson our treasurer will be pleased to discuss any queries.


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