Exclusive rights of burial

Deed Ownership Explained

We will issue The Exclusive Right of Burial following the first burial in a grave space, once all fees have been paid. The registered holder of the Exclusive Right of Burial is referred to as the deed holder.

What an Exclusive Right of Burial is

In purchasing the Exclusive Right of Burial, the deed holder has control over any future internments in the grave space and has the right to apply for a memorial permit.

The ownership of the land remains with Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council and so the deed holder must comply with all rules and regulations relating to the cemetery.

Deed holder details

We may need to write to deed holders about their plot. It is important we have their most recent name and address on our records.

Deed holders should contact us on 01707 357 000 to tell us if their details change. We will then provide them with a notification form to be completed and returned.

Exclusive Right of Burial time period

The law says that graves cannot be sold for more than 100 years at any one time.

The law does allow ownership to be renewed or extended and so families are able to keep the grave for as long as they wish.

Some individuals may choose to extend the ownership of their lease before it is due for renewal. We currently offer ten year extensions.

After the Exclusive Right of Burial expires

At the end of the lease period, you should be given the option of renewing the burial rights for a further period.

If the lease is not renewed the headstone will be removed and can be collected by the owner or destroyed by the Cemetery.

Existing burials in the grave/plot are not removed or disturbed, but the remaining space in the grave may made available for future dedications.

Let us know if you change your address otherwise you may not receive a notice of renewal at the appropriate time.

Cemetery staff can lawfully remove any memorial after giving you a set period of notice to remove it yourself.

Sharing the Exclusive Right of Burial

We allow a maximum of two deed holders. Each deed holder has equal rights and is required to sign the necessary paperwork before we allow the plot to be opened for another internment, or before we authorise a memorial permit.

It can be difficult to get the signature of all deed holders in circumstances where the deed is shared between more than two people. This can cause delays in authorising further internments or memorial permits. To avoid this we have limited deed ownership to be shared between a maximum of two people.

After a deed holder dies

If the registered holder is deceased, the Exclusive Right of Burial must be transferred before any burial (other than that of the registered holder) or memorial permit can be approved.

For more information see the Transfer of Exclusive Rights of Burial.