Cemeteries with crematoria ordered to be closed to visitors

Published: Thursday, April 9, 2020

As part of the national response to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, the Government has issued an instruction that all cemeteries with crematoriums attached should now be closed to visitors.

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This means that both Putney Vale Cemetery and Battersea New Cemetery in Morden, which is managed by Wandsworth Council despite its location, will be closed to visitors at 6pm today (Thursday).

This does not apply to funerals or cremations, which can still be held. The instruction only applies to people planning to visit these two cemeteries.

The order, made by the Ministry of Justice under Section 5 (8) of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 only applies to cemeteries with a crematorium.

This regulation does not apply to other cemeteries which can remain open to visitors.

The council’s director or environment and community services Paul Chadwick said: “This will clearly be upsetting for those who were planning to visit the final resting place of a relative or loved one over the coming days, especially if it coincides with a poignant anniversary. People in this situation have my deepest and utmost sympathy.

“However the legal order from Government makes it clear that these two cemeteries and many others up and down the country, must be closed to all visitors until further notice.

“We hope to be able to reopen both as soon as we are able to.”