New funeral measures at Hailsham Cemetery in response to pandemic
New funeral measures have been made at Hailsham Cemetery in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The cemetery in Ersham Road will remain open for graveside burials only, with burial services being attended by a maximum of six mourners from the immediate family.
Hailsham Town Council says it has announced these new rules in line with Government advice.
Town clerk John Harrison said, “We recognise this is a distressing time for anyone who has lost a loved one. But we cannot emphasise enough the importance of sticking to these measures and restrictions on service.
“They are all being put in place to protect not only members of staff who helping to carry out this critical service, but also to protect the public.”
The cemetery grounds are open as usual from dawn to dusk, but the chapels are closed until further notice.
The interment of cremated remains is all also suspended for the time being.
People are also urged to heed to government advice relating to social distancing while at funerals.
Councillor Richard Grocock said, “The measures we have in place are particularly important to protect those at higher risk of infection from COVID-19, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.
“We are advising funeral directors and families that, as per Government guidelines, only immediate family should be present at the burial – this currently being limited to six people.”
Acting cemetery superintendent Christian Letschka said, “Any person who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or who are self-isolating should not attend.
“Mourners will be asked to stand 2-3 metres away from the grave and commitals will be conducted as quickly as possible. Thereafter, mourners are asked to leave the graveside immediately and avoid any contact with each other.”
Government advice relating to social distancing:
• Observe “Social Distancing” with each other, currently set at 2-3 metres
• Minimise contact with each other, e.g. no hand-shaking
• Refrain from attending the cemetery if you are showing symptoms
• Follow all government guidance on personal hygiene prior to, during and after use of the cemetery
Members of the public can contact the burial services team by calling Hailsham Town Council on 01323 841702 or emailing [email protected]