Because the Friends had created the flower and shrub bed close to the cemetery gates we decided that we should keep it tidy by meeting on a regular basis to weed, prune and plant. We still do just that, on the morning of the first Sunday of each month. Our remit has extended to clearing fallen leaves in Autumn, de-whiskering some of the trees along the main avenues, and picking up litter and fallen branches. A particularly dense jungle of rampant rhododendrons has been cleared [with help from John Fisher], to reveal several headstones which were previously unreachable.
We have also restored the mid-20 century bench atop the paved 'mortuary' area, replacing the damaged wooden slats and painting the metal frame. We are planning to add a plaque dedicated to the memory of our friend Glyn Roberts. We have put up more bird boxes, some of which were kindly donated by a member of the public. One of our recent helpers has been young Jamie, who is working towards his Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award, having already attained the Bronze.
If you would like to meet the Team, come along at about 10.30 on any first Sunday morning (except for January, which we decided was too much to ask!).
NOTE: the condition of individual graves and headstones is the responsibility of the plot owners, and the Friends are not allowed to do any work thereon except with their permission or at their request. However, IWC Bereavement Services* do employ contractors to manage the grassed areas.
new flower bed before planting-up
*Bereavement Services, Isle of Wight Crematorium, Station Lane, Whippingham, PO32 6NJ. Tel: 01983 882288 (office hours).