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Throughout October 2022, the Council has confirmed that it will continue its rolling programme of testing the safety of memorials in its cemeteries, starting with Chepstow cemetery.

The Council is responsible for ensuring, as best it can, the safety of those visiting or working in its cemeteries, and checking the stability of memorials is an important part of that obligation.

The testing will be carried out by trained employees, and those memorials which fail the tests will be made safe with a stake and a band placed around them as a short-term measure. Notices will also be attached to the memorial to provide information to family members who may visit the Cemetery with details of why the ‘make-safe’ system had been used and details of who to contact for further information.

The Council recognises that there is a potential for family members to become upset in the event of a memorial being found to be unsafe, but it is hoped that those affected will understand that the overriding principle is to ensure the safety of people visiting the cemetery. Where possible contact will be made with family members to advise them of the steps they need to take to have the memorial re-erected.

Cllr. Tudor Thomas, Cabinet Member for Social Care, Safeguarding and Accessible Health Services said: “I want to thank our employees for their hard work in checking the safety of these headstones, but most importantly, I want to thank those family members who are very understanding of the safety issue at hand. I am confident that MCC staff will carry out this work with care and sensitivity.”

If a memorial has not been re-erected within six months of test failure, the Council will sink the memorial headstone to a 1/3rd of its depth at the head of the grave until family arrange to have it re-erected by a Registered Memorial Mason.

If you have concerns about the stability of a memorial or require further information you are asked to contact the Cemeteries Officer on 01873 735852. E-mail:

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