Waringstown Presbyterian Church Graveyard Rules

1. The Graveyard of Waringstown Presbyterian Church is the property of the church and is reserved only for the use of members of the congregation, for interment of human remains only. 

2. For the purpose of the Graveyard Rules, a member of the congregation is defined as a communicant member or adherent who has regularly attended worship and contributed at least £100 per annum to congregational funds. 

3. This minimum continuous contribution must be maintained for at least 3 years before the burial rights to a plot can be granted. The Trustees have the right to consider variation in exceptional cases. 

4. When a person ceases to be a member of this congregation (i.e., they cease to attend worship and cease to contribute financially to the church, unless due to age or infirmity), they shall forfeit the burial rights for the Grave Plot or Plots of which they were previously the registered holder. The Trustees have the right to consider variation in exceptional cases. 

5. The mere fact that any person has ancestors or relatives buried in the Graveyard, shall not of itself give any right to purchase the burial rights for a plot or plots. 

6. A registered plot holder has permission to bury an immediate family member in this grave, subject to any charges outlined in these rules. An immediate family member is defined as husband, wife, mother, father, son, daughter, brother or sister. 

7. For the avoidance of doubt no burial plot is owned by any person or body other than the Church who may authorise the use of the plot in accordance with these rules. 

8. The Graveyard shall be managed on behalf of the Congregational Committee by a Sub-Committee of five members (three to form a quorum). 

9. The Congregational Committee shall be summoned in all cases of difficulty and their decision shall be final. 

10. The width of a single grave shall be – New section – 1 metre, Old section – 3 feet. 

11. No grave opened for the first time shall be less than 6 feet deep and shall accommodate a maximum of 3 coffins where possible. Caskets of ashes may also be placed in graves. 

12. No grave shall be opened without the permission of a member of the Graveyard Committee. 

13. All graves shall be opened by a gravedigger/s appointed by the Committee. The gravediggers will have a risk assessment undertaken and workplace precautions in place, as well as valid employee’s and public liability insurances. 

14. Funeral Services in the Graveyard, as in the Church, are entirely in the hands of, and can only be conducted by the Minister in charge of the Congregation or someone authorised by them, and they must be consulted before any arrangements are made. 

15. The Kirk Session and Congregational Committee can undertake no liability whatsoever for any expenses consequent upon a person having permission to open a grave and causes an interment therein by making a statement wilfully or accidentally inaccurate. 

16. The Graveyard Committee may require shrubs in the graveyard to be pruned at any time and have the power to employ a person for this purpose. 

17. No tree or shrub shall be planted, or no monument shall be erected in the graveyard, or inscription be put on any monument, without the consent of the Congregational Committee 

which may generally be delegated to the Graveyard Committee. In default of such approval, such monument, headstone, or other memorial may be removed by the Committee. 

18. All memorials and engravings must be in keeping with the Christian ethos of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. 

19. Headstones only shall be permitted in the new sections of the graveyard. 

20. Contractors or other persons erecting a headstone or surround or carrying out other work to grave plots must remove all surplus materials from the burial ground and will be held responsible for any damage caused to the burial ground. Any contractor carrying out any work to grave plots must hold their own adequate insurance policies. They must also have an adequate risk assessment and workplace precautions in place. 

21. The burial rights fee per plot shall be £250.00 and this shall be subject to periodic review. The maximum number of plots held by a family shall be two. 

22. Allocation of plots is solely the responsibility of the Congregational Committee and managed on its behalf by the Graveyard Committee. 

23. Any person owning the burial rights for a plot, or plots, will not be permitted to transfer those rights to a plot/s in a different section of the graveyard. 

24. Burial plots cannot in general be transferred. The only exception to this is that transfer is permitted to members of the burial rights holder’s immediate Family. All such transfers must be registered with and are subject to approval by the Congregational Committee. Burial plots cannot be transferred to someone who already has two or more plots. 

25. When for any reason the Committee agrees that the registered name of a grave plot is to be changed, a transfer fee of £50.00 in respect of each plot shall apply. Evidence of ownership of burial rights for that plot must be made available before any transfer of registered name can take place. The new owner of rights must meet the membership criterion as defined in these rules. 

26. An opening fee of £75.00 shall apply to every interment and shall be subject to periodic review. 

27. A fee of £50.00 shall apply to erection of any new monument and shall be subject to periodic review. 

28. All these rules are subject to change in legislation regarding burials or the management of burial places and the Congregational Committee reserves the right to periodically review and update these rules. 

29. The Congregational Committee and Trustees shall not be responsible for any loss or damage to any grave plot, or anything placed thereon. Neither will they be liable for any personal injury occurring during the erection of any headstone or surround. 


Clerk of Session: D Crawford                                        

Congregational Committee Secretary: Paul Barbour  

Date: 22/2/22