If you frequently visit the graves of a family member from a previous generation, you may be concerned about the condition of the headstone. Although the stone used to mark graves is incredibly hardy, with the passage of time, it can begin to decay due to the impact of the weather and local environment. Seeing a grave marker fall apart can be upsetting because it may seem like the memory of the deceased is slipping away as their headstone crumbles. For this reason, many people replace old or damaged headstones with new grave markers. This article provides some useful tips for anyone who is planning to replace a headstone.
Consider the style of replacement
The first thing you will need to do is to decide what type of design you would like to use when replacing the headstone. While many people opt for replica designs, you are not limited to this option. You may wish to update the headstone using a modern design. If you decide to modernise the headstone, you should ensure that all family members are in agreement, as making this change could cause a great deal of upset if people have not agreed to make the change.
Remove the old headstone
The next thing you will need to do is remove the old stone. However, before you do this, it is wise to have the stone inspected by a stonemason. The stonemason will be able to examine the current headstone to establish what type of stone it is made out of. If you wish to replace the grave marker with an exact replica, the stonemason will also photograph the headstone so they can draw up detailed plans. You never attempt to remove a headstone yourself. Headstones can be extremely heavy, and they can present a serious risk to life and health if they topple over. You should always call in a professional team to remove headstones.
Check local by-laws and regulations
Before you do anything else, you need to check local by-laws which will dictate the steps you need to take before removing a headstone. In some areas, old grave markers are protected by preservation orders. For more information, contact your local authority.
If you would like further information about removing and replacing a headstone, you should contact a local funeral service. A member of staff will be happy to offer the help and support you need.
Funerals can bring forth such a range of emotions: melancholy, grief, regret, relief and nostalgia. As an assistant at a funeral parlour, I am privileged to help people with organising their loved one’s final journey. I have learnt that a good funeral parlour can make the occasion truly commemorative. When I attend funerals for friends, I am saddened to see that so many ceremonies are traditional and joyless. I later find out that the family members simply weren’t aware of options such as a graveside memorial service. I love the fact that one of my tasks involves showing family members various venues and demonstrating what can be done. In this humble little blog, I hope to make it my mission to share some of the ideas – big and small – from the best funerals I have seen. Perhaps it will give you some inspiration at a difficult time. Bless.