God’s acres to be saved…

How many people reading this have enjoyed a contemplative walk around a burial ground?

Church graveyards and municipal cemeteries are a window into the past. They are often one of the last remaining habitats of rare wildflowers including orchids. An array of bird, bat and insect life can be found. Butterflies are known to benefit from the ivy and long meadow grasses. Venerable majestic trees such as oak and yew and beech can be seen. Add to the array of native wildlife the social and local history that can be gleaned from the headstones it is no wonder that many people are fascinated by these places. A place of death and remembrance and a space for heritage and wildlife.

The Footprint Trust will be launching its Cemetery Warden scheme on Friday 13th November at 10am at All Saints Churchyard in Freshwater, Isle of Wight. The project, has been made possible thanks to support from Heritage Lottery funded West Wight Landscape Partnership.

Those wishing to train and become Cemetery Wardens will have an interest in nature conservation, the landscape, heritage and the community – as this scheme intends to seek to bring together these diverse concerns.

Cemetery Wardens will act as ambassadors for burial grounds, seeking to inform, educate and involve the local community and working with the owners of the site. They will work with other interested individuals and groups to assist in looking after the local burial ground. Information will be given on obtain funding and the Trust will give ongoing support to the trained wardens. This scheme covers all burial grounds, including municipal cemeteries and churchyards, subject to the owner’s permission.

The scheme welcomes people of all faiths, or none, to take part in this on going project. All those completing this free training course will be volunteers of the Footprint Trust and insured by them.

If you have an interest in burial grounds please contact the Footprint Trust for more details or find the leaflet in your local library. info@footprint-trust.co.uk Tel; 01983 82-22-82.


Parish Church of All Saints, Hooke Hill, Freshwater, Isle of Wight. Situated just past the Red Lion public house, PO40 9BP.

Footprint Trust 01983 822282