Sleaford Cemetery is owned and maintained by the Town Council. It is a calm, peaceful area which gives visitors the opportunity for quiet contemplation. The Cemetery is also a haven of nature and wildlife which allows a quietness for reflection and tranquillity.
Opening Times & Facilities
The main Cemetery gate, which is off Eastgate, is open everyday from 8.00 am until 4.00 pm. There is limited parking at the top of the drive.
There is also a pedestrian gate which is open seven days a week, twenty four hours a day.
There are unfortunately no toilet facilities at the Cemetery. The nearest toilets can be found at The Hub or Money's Yard.
Sleaford Cemetery is situated on Eastgate, the entrance is marked by the original stone pillars and gates, (restored in 2007), and a timber frame cottage that used to be the residence of the Cemetery Superintendent and is now a private house.
The Cemetery is laid out as four main areas:
Old Portion (1856 onwards)
New Portion (1884 onwards)
New Section (1941 onwards)
Woodland Section (2004 onwards)
Layout of the Cemetery
Burial and Memorial Fees
All the memorials within the cemetery are privately owned and it is not the responsibility of the Town Council to maintain them. However the Town Council does have the duty to ensure that all the headstones and other memorials are in a safe condition. The owner of most memorials will usually be a relative of the deceased at the time of burial but after a period of time this will probably pass to other family members. All memorials receive a periodic inspection and, as a last resort, may be laid down if found to be unsafe. This protects the public and also the memorial is laid down gently rather than possibly falling uncontrolled and being damaged.
Sleaford Cemetery Historical Guide and Map
In the summer of 2021 the Mayor of Sleaford at the time and Sleaford Town Council created a Cemetery historical guide and map. The guide is full of interesting facts and pictures and is available free of charge from the Riverside Post Office, Sleaford Town Hall and the William Alvey School (in a covered tub on the railings at the front of the school).
Credits: thanks to Simon Pawley for the historical text, Dominic Righini-Brand for the photography, Harriott Brand for the artwork and Evgeniya Righini-Brand for the graphic design.
The Cemetery Trees and Grounds
The twelve acre Cemetery site is home to almost 300 identified and recorded trees and numerous woody shrubs. The trees are inspected every three years by the local authority tree inspector and remedial works undertaken to ensure their continued health. Specimen trees include several black pines which date from the opening of the Cemetery in 1856. Other trees of note include the Portuguese laurels along the entrance driveway, a Tulip tree and a fine beech tree in the old section of the Cemetery.
Formal flower beds alongside the entrance driveway are planted up with seasonal bedding and perennial plants to present a welcoming scene. The Council is moving away from 'traditional' bedding plants to more pollinator-friendly annual planting schemes. We endeavour to keep the beds looking colourful and attractive, whilst balancing this with a more climate and ecologically supportive planting strategy.
Spring-flowering bulbs are planted in drifts within the grassy areas of the older sections of the burial grounds. We extended the bulb plantings in 2021 and planted English Bluebell to add to the beautiful picture that that bulbs create in the spring time. When the bulbs have finished flowering the plant leaves are left for several weeks in order to replenish the bulb corm; these areas may look 'untidy' for a few weeks whilst the grass is left to grow. We hope that people will appreciate the reasons why we do not mow the grass here for a little while.
The oldest part of the Cemetery is left more informal to provide a habitat for wildlife, insects and wildflowers. The grass here is cut just once a year. We hope that visitors find this area in particular a welcoming haven of quietness, reflection and tranquility.
The Council is proud of the variety and stature of its many trees at the Cemetery. There has been a long-tradition of planting specimen trees at the Cemetery, from the first black pines in 1856 to present day tree acquisitions. In 2021 several new trees were planted after the Mayor of that year raised funds as part of his civic duties. These new trees were planted as part of a replenishment programme and include a ginko, mountain ash and stag's horn.
Tree Guide and Map
A guide highlighting specimen trees forms a companion guide to the popular history guide and map of the Cemetery.
The Council was delighted to achieve Arbnet Level 1 arboretum status for the Cemetery in December 2021.
Certificate from Arbnet for Sleaford Cemetery arboretum status.
List of the 47 recorded tree species in the Cemetery, as identified by the Tree Officer at North Kesteven District Council in September 2019 as part of the 3-yearly tree inspection.
Full list showing the 281 trees inspected at the Cemetery in September 2019. Each tree has a code which is shown on the maps below.
Maps showing the locations of trees in the Cemetery
Please refer to the list of trees inspected above for the tree identification code which can be found on the maps below.
Map showing trees in south east area of Cemetery
Map showing trees in south west section of cemetery
Map showing trees in north west section of the Cemetery
Map showing trees in north east section of Cemetery
Map showing trees in the south section of the Cemetery