Coronavirus

Buying a grave or cremated remains plot

COVID-19 update

Update on funerals and cemeteries 28 May

On 23 March, the Prime Minister announced that all social events - excluding funerals - must stop to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

Following discussions across the region, Solihull Council along with most councils in the West Midlands, took the decision to permit up to ten mourners to attend a funeral. In accordance with the government’s guidelines this should usually be from the deceased’s household or close family.

As the government relaxes the current restrictions, the council will review the situation in Solihull and the limit on attendance. We hope to strike a balance between enabling people to attend funerals with the importance of keeping mourners and staff safe from exposure to coronavirus.

Memorial sales, memorial headstone permitting, buying graves in reserve, scatterings and cremated remains interments are all suspended until further notice.

Solihull Council will open Widney Manor Cemetery on weekdays, 4 – 6pm, from Monday 1 June. The council took the decision in line with government guidance and after monitoring the situation.

Opening times at cemeteries for personal visits to graves and memorials are as follows:

  • Woodlands/Robin Hood: Saturday/Sunday only, 9.00am to 6.00pm
  • Widney Manor: Monday to Friday, 4.00pm to 6.00pm; Saturday/Sunday, 9.00am to 6.00pm

Weekday opening is possible at Widney Manor as there is no crematorium, so numbers of funerals are much lower. The number at Robin Hood and Woodlands remains high, so access continues to be to those attending a funeral apart from weekends. The council plans to relax these restrictions as numbers of funerals fall. Waiting rooms, book of remembrance rooms and memorial rooms remain closed at all times.

Social distancing guidance should be followed when visiting a cemetery and people should not gather in groups. Visits should normally be limited to an hour, to prevent congestion and allow others to visit.

Mourners are welcome to use mobile phones to film and share funeral services with those not able to attend, using media platforms such as Facebook Live provided they have permission from the funeral applicant and the officiant/minister. We are also offering free webcasting at Robin Hood and Woodlands during the pandemic.

You can find answers to some Frequently Asked Questions here.

When you buy a grave or cremated remains plot, you are buying an exclusive right of burial grant, not the land itself. This means that you lease the land for a specified period of time.

Normally, your funeral director will help to make the necessary arrangements for purchasing the exclusive right of burial. If you would like to make these arrangements yourself please do not hesitate to contact our team on 0121 709 7009 who will do all they can to help you.

The grant is a written document (grave deeds); we issue this when you have paid the appropriate fee. The grant shows for how many years you have ownership of the grave for. You will need to show the grant when you need to use the grave.

The exclusive right of burial includes the right to have a memorial installed on the grave. This will need to meet agreed specifications which are available upon request.

You must apply for permission if you wish to have a memorial erected on a grave. Normally, the application will be completed and submitted on your behalf by the funeral director or memorial stonemason appointed by you to carry out the work.

Please view our memorial options web page to see what options are available.

How do I reserve a grave or cremated remains plot?

You can only purchase the exclusive rights of burial in reserve if the death has not already occurred and only for cremated remains plots at Robin Hood Cemetery, Widney Manor Cemetery or Woodlands Cemetery and full graves at Widney Manor Cemetery.

Reserve a grave or cremated remains plot

When we have received your application we will take a non-refundable deposit. Deposits can be paid by credit or debit card.

When we have received your deposit payment we will reserve the next available grave or plot in the cemetery for you.

Selections are made at the discretion of the Cemetery Manager and you cannot select a grave or plot of your own choice.

We will telephone you or email you with your grave or plot number and we will temporarily reserve it for 30 days to give you time to decide if you are happy with it.

If you do not contact us before your 30 day reservation expires we will contact you to confirm that we have cancelled it and we will retain your deposit.

When you are happy with the grave or plot we have selected for you, you can pay the balance by credit or debit card or we can arrange for an invoice to be sent to your home. We will deduct your deposit from the balance of your lease.

When we have received your balance payment we will reserve the grave or plot in the cemetery for you.

Fees and charges

Download fees and charges for burials and cremations

How to make a payment

Payment for these services are usually by debit or credit card. You may contact us by phone on 0121 709 7009 or in person by visiting our Moat Lane Office, The Central Depot, Moat Lane, Solihull, B91 2LW.

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