The churchyard is still open for burials but is controlled by the current Parochial Church Council policy which states:
Guidelines for burial in Churchyard.
- Those whose names appear on Parish Church Electoral Roll
- Spouses of those appearing on Church Electoral Roll
- Residents of the Ecclesiastical Parish of Bramshall
The PCC is not insensitive to the feelings of bereaved families and there may be occasions where somebody not covered by this policy can demonstrate a close pastoral connection entitling them to interment in the churchyard, but this will remain at the discretion of the Wardens and Local Vicar.
Being within the Diocese of Lichfield, our churchyard is subject to regulations as laid down by the diocesan chancellor. In effect this governs what is permissible, mainly in terms of memorials (headstones) but also with regards to wreaths, floral tributes and other items.
A resume of the regulations states:
- Incumbents are to discourage the provision of receptacles for flowers set within memorial tablets. However, if an incumbent believes that such provision is justified on pastoral grounds he or she may permit the inclusion of the same in a memorial.
- Artificial flowers are not permitted and should be removed from any memorials on which they are laid. By way of exception to this prohibition the placing of wreaths and poppies is permissible in the periods of and leading up to Remembrance Day, Christmas, and Easter and on the anniversaries of death or marriage. Such items are to be removed not more than one month after those occasions
- No balloons or other portable items are to be left on a grave save that such items may be left in position for the period of one calendar month after interment.
Again, the PCC and clergy of the Uttoxeter Area are mindful of the sensitivities surrounding such issues, and will endeavour to work within these regulations while retaining a pastoral care towards families at times of bereavement and beyond.
When the requirement for a new memorial to be introduced into the churchyard arises it is advisable for the family to seek guidance from the Local Vicar (Reverend John Lander) in the first instance. Remembering that, legally, the headstones are the property of the family (as is the responsibility for their safety), while the burial ground remains the property of the church under the control of the Area Team Rector and PCC.
While trying to maintain the churchyard to ensure the area remains an attractive and peaceful oasis, the PCC is also committed to creating a nature friendly environment. Please be reminded that there is a footpath through the churchyard and it would be appreciated if you could refrain from walking through the grassed areas unless visiting graves. All dogs should be kept on leads through the churchyard, and any mess removed. East Staffs Borough Council Waste Bins are provided for 'normal' rubbish - so please ensure that only green waste (ie plants, flowers, grass clippings) is placed in the Brown bins, and any other waste in the Black bin.
This may all sound rather 'heavy' and uninviting, but the aim is to ensure the churchyard is an appropriate and respectful sanctuary in which all may seek tranquillity & peace and an opportunity for reflection & remembrance in an idyllic environment.