Norham Churchyard Rules

1.  The Diocesan Guidelines for Churchyards can be found by clicking on the link below:-


2.  Applying for a memorial in Norham Churchyard

The following words been prepared on behalf of The Parochial Church Council (PCC) of St Cuthbert’s Church, Norham, to provide a simple set of guidelines for choosing a memorial for a grave in Norham churchyard.

The PCC is responsible for managing the churchyard on behalf of the whole community.  We hope that these guidelines will help you to choose a memorial that:

  • is in keeping with the majority of the existing memorials in Norham churchyard.
  • will help to conserve the special character of the churchyard for everyone’s benefit.

Some of the guidelines are fixed by the Chancellor of the Diocese, and apply to all parishes within the Diocese of Newcastle (i.e. between the Tyne and the Tweed).  Some of the guidelines have been decided locally, and reflect the particular circumstances of Norham Parish.  Full copies of the Chancellor’s Rules and of the local churchyard rules are available on request and can be read by clicking on the link in section 1 above.  Please note that the rules are different from those that apply in public cemeteries.

  1. Permission must be obtained for the introduction of any memorial.  The parish priest (or, during a vacancy, the Area Dean) may give authority for the introduction of memorials that comply with these guidelines.
  2. A minimum period of six months should elapse between the death of a person to be commemorated and the application for a memorial.
  3. Headstones should be:
    • 750mm to 1200mm (2ft 6in to 4ft) high
    • 500mm to 900mm (1ft 8in to 3ft) wide
    • 75mm to 150mm (3in to 6in) thick

    A slate memorial may be thinner, but not less than 38mm (1½in) thick.

  4.  Memorials should be made of natural stone or hardwood.
  5. Stones used in local buildings, or similar to them in colour and texture, are preferred.
  6. If granite is to be used, then a light brown, light red or grey granite is preferable to black granite, and can be approved by the parish priest without reference to the PCC.  A request for the use of black granite will be referred to the PCC.
  7. White marble is not permitted.
  8. If a memorial is to have a polished surface, then only the front of the memorial and the top surface of the base may be polished.  The polished surfaces should have a sanded or ‘eggshell’ finish, rather than a highly reflective or ‘mirror’ finish.
  9. Inscriptions should be simple and dignified.
  10. Religious-type symbols can be approved by the parish priest without reference to the PCC.  A request for a non-religious picture or illustration will be referred to the PCC.
  11. Photographs are not permitted.


These guidelines were last updated at a PCC meeting on 28th January 2013.