FAQs

Below we have tried to answer any questions you might have.  If you cannot find the answer to your question here, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We are here to help and guide you.

Do we have to use a Funeral Director?

No you don’t.  Most families choose to use a funeral director so to ensure that their loved one is properly cared for from the time of death to actual burial.

Can you recommend a Funeral Director?

We do have a list of funeral directors who have conducted burials at Belsay.

We enquired about natural burial with a Funeral Director and they put us off, what do we do now?

We can help you find a funeral director who will be be more supportive.  Please ask the office for details.

Can we have a non religious service?

There are no rules or format which must be adhered to at Belsay, any type of service is possible, within reason.  We are happy to provide you with advice and suggestions.

Can we hold a religious service in our chosen place of worship and then arrive for the burial?

You may hold a service, religious or otherwise, prior to the burial.  Faith Ministers and/or humanist celebrants are welcome to conduct services at Belsay Woodland Burial Ground.

Can we bring dogs?

Dogs are welcome but must be kept on short leads at all times.  Please bring bags with you, clear up any mess and take it away from the site.

Can we take photos and videos?

We actively encourage people to take photographs and videos to remember the day.

What type of music can we have?

You may have any music you wish.  You will need to provide your own music, source and power supply.

Can we bring flowers?

Fresh flowers are welcome, unless the family have requested ‘no flowers’ or ‘family flowers only’.  Only fresh flowers may be left at the site and no containers, oasis, floral foam or vases are permitted, except immediately following a funeral service when floral arrangements are accepted.  The Estate will remove floral arrangements after 3 days; only fresh flowers will be left in situ.

Can we choose the position of the grave?

Yes, you will be able to choose from a number of plots in a given area.

Can I reserve an adjacent plot?

Yes, of course.  Please contact the office to discuss.

Can I be buried next to a family member or friend?

Family plots are available.  Please contact the office to discuss details.

Can I buy a burial plot in advance?

Yes, plots can be pre-purchased and you will be issued with a ‘Right of Burial Certificate’. Please download a form (link) and contact the office to discuss.

Do we own the grave?

No.  Ownership of ‘Exclusive Right of Burial’ does not imply ownership of the land itself or the right to carry out any particular activity on the grave plot. The land is still owned by Belsay Estate LLP, its heirs and successors. Please see our Terms & Conditions for further details.

Are there any ongoing charges or expenses?

No.

When can we visit?

Visitors are most welcome at Belsay Woodland Burial Ground which is open 365 days a year form dawn to dusk but please note that at certain times access to individual graves may be restricted, for instance when an adjacent grave is being dug, but any disturbance will be kept to a minimum.

Can we bring flowers when we visit?

Only fresh flowers may be left at the site and no containers, oasis, floral foam or vases are permitted, except immediately following a funeral service when floral arrangements are accepted.  The Estate will remove floral arrangements after 3 days; only fresh flowers will be left in situ.

Can we plant flowers?

Only flowers provided by the Estate may be planted as it is our intention to develop a natural woodland and meadow reserve. Please contact  the office for further details.

Can we mark the Grave Site?

Yes, with a stone plaque provided by our specified supplier, or trees may be requested.

Are there any facilities for a service or a wake?

We have all the facilities you need for an indoor ceremony and/or a reception for your guests before or after a burial. The newly converted Blacksmith’s Barn can seat 100 people for a memorial service and has all the audio visual equipment you might need. Our resident florist can also decorate the Barn for you with pedestal arrangements and/or table posies.

If you would like to arrange a reception after the burial, we can offer you a choice of three function rooms to accommodate your needs – from a standing reception for twenty to a sit down for 80-100. We provide a buffet service which can include your choice of sandwiches, quiche, sausage rolls, mini pizzas, soup, scones, tray bakes and cake – all lovingly made by the ladies of the Blacksmith’s Coffee shop. We also have an alcohol licence.