Offering peaceful views of the River Crouch, the family owned Crouch Valley Meadow Natural Burial Ground in Althorne, Essex opened in 2004.
Crouch Valley Meadow offers natural burial plots, and also supports the scattering and interment of ashes. In every case, the adjacent plot/s can be reserved for the spouse or other family members.
The long-term aim of the owners is to ensure a well managed eco-green burial site where a meadow grave offers a return to nature – among wild flowers and native trees, with only the sounds of birds and small animals close by. The owners have entered into covenants to ensure the long-term upkeep and maintenance of Crouch Valley Meadow which will remain an environmentally friendly space for all time. No grave will ever be re-used or disturbed. Those who lie here will rest in peace, forever
The site welcomes members of all backgrounds, faiths and religions.
Families are free to organise a green funeral in whatever way they choose. The ceremony may be held at the graveside or at crematorium, and be followed by a reception or wake at a nearby venue, or vice versa.
Only cut flowers without cellophane are allowed on graves. All funeral tributes should be removed 14 days after the burial.
Memorials take the form of a memorial tree the bereaved can plant on the grave to mark the loss. These trees and the meadowland provide a natural habitat for the wildlife. This should be done within a year of the funeral and during planting season (November – March).
A hardwood plaque can also be used to mark the grave and may be replaced when it biodegrades.