At Parndon Wood Cemetery and Crematorium we have a comfortable and modern chapel, which has recently been refurbished.

We provide seating for 96 people and also have plenty of standing room for larger funerals.

We offer a range of services throughout the week to provide more choice to the families we serve. For service information, visit this page.

We have a modern digital music system that can provide almost any music choice that is requested. Click here for further information and our current music library:  www.obitus.com

We also offer webcasting of your service, as well as DVD or audio recording of the service. For more info see 'Personalising your funeral'. The chapel can be adapted to provide a fitting environment for any choice of funeral, regardless of faith or religion.

We have car parking for over 70 cars and the crematorium has disabled parking close to the chapel. We have a comfortable waiting room and toilets are provided nearby, wheel chair access is provided throughout. As well as a crematorium, Parndon Wood also has a cemetery on site – please click on the tab for further details.

1. Cemetery & Crematorium Rules & Regulations

These Rules and Regulations are made by Harlow District Council, pursuant to the power contained in Article 3 of The Local Authorities Cemetery Order 1977, in order to ensure the proper management of the following Cemetery:

Parndon Wood Cemetery, Harlow, Essex CM19 4SF


1. Any person admitted to the Cemetery & Crematorium is subject to these Regulations and to any directions that may be given by a Cemeteries Officer, authorised by the Council, in the course of administering the Cemetery and Crematorium service.

2. The grounds will be open to the public during the following times:

On Weekdays: 8.00 am to 7.30pm.

On Saturdays: 8.00am to 7.30pm.

On Sundays and Bank Holidays: 10.00am to 7.30pm.

Office opening hours: 8.30am to 5.00pm – Monday to Friday

Book of Remembrance Room
Monday – Friday 8:30am – 5pm,
Saturday 9am – 12 noon,
Sunday & Bank Hols 10am – 1pm.

Any permanent variations to these opening times will be displayed on the main notice board at least seven days prior to the change.

3.  A Cemeteries Officer may take any reasonable action to safeguard the health or safety of the public including closing a Cemetery or part of a Cemetery to the public for the purpose of interments, adverse weather conditions or any reason deemed necessary for the safe operation of the cemetery.

4.  All applications for burials must be made to the Cemeteries Office at Parndon Wood between the hours of 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.  Other than in exceptional circumstances or for religious reasons and with the agreement of the Cemeteries Officer at least two full working days' notice must be given before the proposed date of burial.  Notice must be given on the Parndon Wood Cemetery standard Notice of Interment.

5. The appropriate fee or charge must be paid to the Cemeteries Office before any interment or work takes place unless agreed otherwise by the Cemeteries Office.

6.  Any funeral cortege arriving more than 15 minutes before or after the appointed time may be directed to wait by a Cemeteries Officer until it is convenient to proceed.

7.  Any person wishing to carry out an interment or any other work must report to the Cemeteries Officer before carrying out the interment or work.  No interment may take place without the presence of a Cemeteries Officer.

8. No coffin, casket, wreath, monument, memorial or other article placed in the Cemetery in connection with an interment may be removed from the Cemetery without the permission of the Cemeteries Office.

9. All monuments, memorials, wreaths, plants, plant holders or other articles placed in the Cemetery are the responsibility of the grave owner, Parndon Wood Cemetery will not accept any responsibility for their repair or maintenance but may take any appropriate actions to make them safe and recover their costs from the grave owner.

10. No person who is intoxicated, disorderly, uses obscene or offensive language or who commits a nuisance will be allowed in any part of the Cemetery and Crematorium.

11. Dogs must be kept on a lead in all parts of the Cemetery. Dogs, other than assistance dogs are not allowed in the chapel or public areas.

12. Cycling, skating, skateboarding, the lighting of fireworks or the playing of games or music are not permitted within the Cemetery.

13. Motor vehicles must not proceed at more than 10 miles per hour and may only drive and park on the roads or prescribed areas.  Drivers must obey any directions made by a Cemeteries Officer with regard to routes or parking.  Unauthorised vehicles may be clamped or removed from the Cemetery. Parking on lawned areas is not permitted.

14. No person may ply for hire or solicit for business within the Cemetery.

Purchase of Graves

15. Any resident of the Borough may, subject to availability and payment of the current fee, purchase a Grant for the Exclusive Rights of Burial in a grave space for up to three body interments and six cremated remains interments.  Non-residents may similarly purchase rights of burial on payment of the current fee.  The period of Grant will not exceed 50 years.

16. Residents of the Borough are defined as:

"A person who is resident in the Borough at the time of their death or was resident within 1 year prior to their death, or who was previously resident in the Borough for at least 10 years in the 20 years prior to their death".

NB. A grave purchased by a qualifying resident will continue to be treated as a resident's grave for the purpose of their interment, or that of their spouse, even if they do not meet the Resident's definition at the time of death.

17. Such Grants will only be made to members of the public either individually or jointly; Grants will not be made in the name of any business or company with the exception of Solicitors or Local Authorities acting on behalf of the deceased.

18. The Exclusive Right of Burial in a private grave is 50 years from the date of purchase. Grantees (grave owners) should inform the Cemetery office immediately of change of address.

19. Such Grants may only be transferred with the consent of the Cemetery office and will be subject to the following conditions:

i. The original Deed of Grant must be produced or an Statutory Declaration to the effect that it has been lost sworn in front of a Commissioner for Oaths.

ii. The original Grant owner must give their written consent in an assignment form or have made provision for the transfer in their will or if there is no will the Grant will pass to the next of kin subject to them completing a Statutory Declaration indemnifying the Cemetery against any claims by other relatives.

iii.  The new owner must pay any transfer fee that would have been payable if they had been the original owner. 

iv. The new owner must pay a fee set at a minimum of one hour's administration time at the current rate of charge.


20. Each body, whether adult or child, brought into the Cemetery for Interment must be contained in a suitable coffin or casket.  Except:

i. In circumstances agreed by the Head of Public Protection, and

ii. For death due to childbirth, when mother and child may be buried together, only one body may be contained in each coffin.

21. The Deed of Grant of Right of Exclusive Burial must be produced to the Cemetery Office before any interment takes place.  No grave may be opened for interment without the written consent of the grave owner except for the interment of the grave owner.

22. An interment fee at the current rate must be paid prior to the interment taking place.

23. The Registrar's Certificate for Disposal or the Coroner's Order for Burial must be produced to the Cemetery Office before the interment of any body.  The Cemetery Office must be advised at the time of booking if the deceased died of an infectious disease.

24. The Cemetery Office must be advised prior to the interment of any special tributes or personal items that families wish to keep otherwise these will be removed and disposed of.  All tributes will be removed from graves and disposed of two weeks after the last interment unless a specific request is made.

25.All graves without exception will be dug by persons employed or contacted to the cemetery.

Care of Graves

26.Wreaths of fresh flowers, flower arrangements and cut flowers shall not be left on any grave for longer than two weeks. Christmas wreaths will be removed and disposed of during the last week of January. A Cemetery Officer may remove and dispose of any wreaths or cut flowers which detract from the appearance of the Cemetery.

27. The Cemetery reserves the right of access over all grave spaces and the right to temporarily remove without notice any memorial, potted plants or frame from any grave to facilitate the digging of another grave for the purpose of interment or exhumation.

28. The cemetery have right to place spoil from excavated graves on adjacent plots for the purpose of burial or exhumation. Following the interment all affected areas will be reinstated to their previous condition.

29. The size of the grave plot for lawn memorials is 760mm (2’6”) long x 760mm (2’6”) wide. The size of the plot for traditional graves is 760mm (2’6”) wide x 1980mm (6’6”) long.

30. No surround may be placed around any grave or part of a grave on any part of a Cemetery designated as a Lawn Cemetery other than around an area no more than 760mm (2'6") square measured from the back of the headstone of each grave,that may be cultivated for plants.  Surrounds must be of stone or marble and must not protrude more than 50mm (2") above ground level. Plastic or wooden surrounds are not permitted.  No planting is allowed on any other part of a lawn grave.

31. The placing of paving slabs, shingle, or unauthorised memorials etc around and leading to a grave space is strictly prohibited and shall be removed without prior notice on the grounds of health and safety and to satisfy the insurance underwriter of the cemetery.

32. All flower containers must be enclosed in a permanent surround or sunk to ground level within the designated planting area.

33. New graves or re-opened graves in the Lawn Cemetery will be seeded during spring or autumn at least three months and no more than nine months after the last interment.  All surrounds or plants other than in the designated planting area will be removed prior to seeding.

34. Plants may be planted within the confines of a grave surround on any grave in a part of the Cemetery designated for traditional graves.

35. The Cemeteries Office may remove, without notice, any tree or shrub that obstructs any grave, headstone, road or path. No trees or large growing shrubs are permitted to be planted around or within the grave space. These will be removed without notification.

36. Plans showing the grave spaces are kept by the Cemetery office and may be viewed during normal office hours.

Monuments and Memorials

37. No monument or memorial may be placed in any Cemetery without the prior written approval of the Cemetery. Unauthorised memorials will be removed from the cemetery at the grave owner’s expense.

38. Applications for approval must be made on the prescribed form and must contain full details, including drawings and full inscriptions with translations into English if appropriate, of the monument or memorial.  Where required the appropriate permit fee must be paid prior to the erection of the monument or memorial.

39. The Cemeteries Office may after giving one month's notice prohibit any monumental mason from carrying out work in any Cemetery for persistently infringing these regulations.

40. All monumental masons must report to the Cemeteries Office before carrying out work in respect of any monument or memorial, even if the monument or memorial is not being removed or installed.  Monumental masons are not permitted to carry out any work in the Cemeteries on Sundays or Bank Holidays.

41. Landings and foundations for grave surrounds and headstones may be installed by the Cemetery Staff if necessary. Foundations laid by stonemasons must be of the appropriate size for the type of grave plot.

42. On lawn graves headstones must be at least 600mm (2') high above ground level, 300mm (1') wide and 75mm (3") deep and no more than 900mm (3') high, 760mm (2'6") wide and 150mm (6") deep.  Headstones may only be installed on secured landing.

43.On lawn graves, kerb surrounds are permitted for the cultivation of plants or maintenance free chippings/cover slabs. Surrounds must not exceed 760mm (2’6”) wide and 460mm (1’6”) deep.

44. On graves where the exclusive right of burial has not been granted headstones must be no more than 750mm (2'6") high above ground level, 300mm (1') wide and 75mm (3") deep.

45. Traditional memorials should not be erected until at least 12 months after the last interment. The Cemetery will not be responsible for levelling memorials where the owner has erected a memorial before 12 months.

46. Traditional memorials must not exceed 760mm (2’6”) wide and 1980mm (6’6”) in length. The maximum height permitted for traditional memorial is 1830mm (6’)

47. No items are permitted on any land other than where the Exclusive Right of Burial has been granted and may not exceed the memorial dimensions for the type of grave.

48. All monuments or memorials must be inscribed with the appropriate grave number.

49. All monuments or memorials must be securely fixed together and fixed to the landing or foundation with dowels of copper, aluminium or galvanised metal at least 12mm in diameter and must extend at least 75mm into the foundation unit.

50. All monuments or memorials must be constructed of best quality solid stone.  York stone or similar soft stones or composite stones or wooden or other perishable materials are not permitted.

51. The Cemetery has the right to make safe any memorial that is deemed to be dangerous or insecure by means of laying flat said memorial. The cemetery will make every effort to contact the owner and if required recover any costs for safety work required. 

Gardens of Remembrance

52. The Woodland Gardens are a communal remembrance area. Dedicated areas are not permitted unless authorised by the cemetery office. Flowers and potted plants are permitted and flute vases can be provided at no charge by the cemetery office.

53. Personal items are not permitted within the communal woodlands or outside dedicated memorial plots within the Garden of Remembrance. Unauthorised items will be removed without notice. These items will be retained for a period of two weeks for collection otherwise the cemetery may dispose of such items.

54. Private cremation plots have their own appropriate regulations for dedication. Please refer to the memorial agreement. 


55. No interred remains may be exhumed or removed from any part of any Cemetery without an appropriate Home Office Licence.  In respect of an interment in an area of a Cemetery designated as Consecrated, a Faculty from the Diocese must also be obtained.

56. Any exhumation must be carried out in accordance with all conditions set out in the Licence or Faculty and must be carried out when the Cemetery is closed to the public.

57. An exhumation fee and any appropriate grave digging or memorial removal charges at the current rate must be paid prior to the exhumation.


58. Registers of all burials and a plan of each Cemetery will be kept at the Cemeteries Office and will be open, by appointment, to search by any member of the public during the opening hours of the Cemeteries Office.  Provision of written confirmation of Register details will be charged at a minimum of half an hour's administration time at the current rate of charge.

Additional rules

53. The Cemetery reserves the right to make any alterations and additions to the Rules and Regulations of the Cemetery & Crematorium at any time it feels fit.

2. Cemetery Memorial Information

Traditional Section


Lawn Section

LAWN GRAVE HEADSTONE & BASE 2’6” or 3’ max height

Lawn Grave


IMPORTANT INFORMATION for a new grave owner

Permitted memorial options for the type of grave selected

Lawn graves permit a headstone, base and 30” kerb only - traditional memorials permit a full kerb memorial that covers the 6’6” x 2’6” grave space.

Care of the grave after immediately after the burial

It is normal for the grave to settle soon after the burial, more so in wet conditions. The grave will be topped up by the cemetery as soon as possible using heavy soil.

Future care of the grave

No fencing around lawn graves is permitted. Trees are not to be planted within or around the grave. When the grave has settled, normally after 9-12 months the cemetery will topsoil and seed the plot.

Full information about care of graves is provided in the Cemetery Rules and Regulations.

Floral tributes & personal items

The cemetery will remove floral tributes following a burial normally after 14 days or sooner if their condition detracts from the general appearance. The cemetery cannot take responsibility for the safe keeping of any items left on the grave space.

Grave Exclusive Rights of Burial - lease period

The length of lease granted for cemetery grave plots at Parndon Wood is 50 years. This can be topped up after 25 years or renewed when expired. The deed to the plot will normally be sent to the owner within 10 working days.

Rules and Regulations

A complete copy of the Cemetery Rules and Regulations will be provided to each new grave owner. These will provide comprehensive information about all aspects of the cemetery and crematorium.

Grave positioning

We will endeavour to dig the position and depth that has been selected for burial. Unfortunately sometimes due to circumstances beyond our control such as ground conditions or collapses we may have to move the grave position or reduce the depth. If we are required to change positions we will try to locate this in the closest location to the original position.

The cemetery reserve the right to add additional positions or change the layout/numbering of a section should the need be required.