Before The Funeral

Christchurch Cemeteries

Christchurch City Council

Hawthornden Road (1st left off Avonhead Road after Withells Road)

Opening hours:

• Summer – 8.00am–8.30pm
• Winter –  8.00am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments

• Monday to Friday 9.00am – 4.00pm
• Saturday 9.00am – 1.00 pm

Avonhead Park Cemetery opened in 1983 with a park-like setting created by extensive tree planting, which was an innovative design at the time. The original area has ground level plaques. In 1993 a second area was created allowing for upright memorials. Area’s for ashes interment are available in the grounds.

The extension to the cemetery was opened in August 2009 and will be landscaped over a period of time. It is now available for new burials.

Opening times:

• Summer – 8.00am–8.30pm
• Winter – 8.00am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments

• Monday to Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00am – 1.00pm

Belfast Cemetery opened in 1904 and is located in a rural setting. A traditional cemetery with larger headstones and lawn areas which allow for upright and reclining memorials. There are special areas for set aside for children and ash interments and a section used by the Orthodox Russian community. It was originally operated by the Belfast Cemetery Board and later by the Waimairi County Council.

The cemetery is now full except for second interments.

Entrance off Linwood Avenue (cnr Keighleys and Linwood Avenue)

Opening times:

• Summer – 7.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 7.30am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday – 9.00 am – 1.00pm

Bromley Cemetery was opened in 1918 because there was a need for burial places for the great number of victims of the influenza epidemic who perished in the last months of that year. There are many Returned and Services Association (RSA) graves, predominantly Great War veterans.

Also found here is a memorial for stillborn children and one of the few mausoleums in Christchurch.

Bromley Cemetery is now full except for ash and second interments in family plots. The majority of memorials here tend to be lower and more conservative than most older cemeteries, providing a more orderly appearance which is accentuated by the uniformity of the Returned Services section.

Entrance off Butterfield Avenue (next door to Bromley Park on Buckleys Road)

Opening times:

• Summer – 7.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 7.30am–4.00pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

Linwood Cemetery which opened in 1884, was the first Christchurch cemetery located outside the town ‘on sanitary grounds’. It was at one time called Christchurch Cemetery or Sandilands Cemetery, on account of the sandy soil, very suitable for digging. It has many large and interesting monuments, most of which are to the memory of early residents of the eastern suburbs. It has a Jewish section, including graves resited from the 19th century Jewish cemetery in Hereford Street. There are many notable people buried in the cemetery, along with a number of ‘colourful’ characters.

This cemetery, which has some exquisite examples of early monumental masonry, has fallen into disrepair as a result of vandalism and neglect. The sandy soils on this site do not provide a sound foundation for headstones and surrounds. An extensive restoration programme is currently in progress. This includes repairs to monumental masonry, path reconstruction, landscape enhancement and entrance redevelopment.

The Linwood Cemetery Working Party was set up as a vehicle for community input into planning and redevelopment and they have been active in work at the cemetery, along with Linwood Intermediate School.

Although virtually full, there are still vacant plots available in the children’s, ashes and Jewish areas.

Corner Cypress Street & Ruru Road

Opening times:

• Summer – 7.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 7.30am–4.00pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

Memorial Park Cemetery opened in 1956, is a lawn cemetery with concrete beams for upright and reclining memorials. Special areas are provided for the interment of children and ashes, and well maintained lawns and gardens surround these.

Off Ruru Road

Opening times:

• Summer – 7.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 7.30am–4.00pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

Ruru Lawn Cemetery opened in 1941,  covers 15.1427 hectares and has granite and bronze plaques set at ground level. It has a large Returned Services Association section and separate areas are set aside for different denominations.  An new ashes area has been developed adjacent to block 4 at the southern end of the cemetery.

There is an ongoing programme to construct kerb around the plaque’s. This will alleviate the subsidence of plaque and ground maintenance issues.

The victims of the infamous 1947 Ballantyne’s fire are buried here and there is a memorial to them on site.

Ballantyne’s Fire Memorial

Ballantyne’s department store in Colombo Street was the scene of one of New Zealand’s most disastrous fires late in the afternoon of 18 November 1947. A total of 41 people died and damage was put at half a million pounds. The fire was first discovered in the basement of the wooden building but the alarm was not given immediately. The actual time the alarm was received by the fire brigade was 3.46pm. Onlookers say that within 15 minutes of their first noticing the black smoke billowing from the building, it was past saving. Of three shop girls who jumped after being trapped on upper storeys of the three-storey building, one died and two were seriously injured.

A Royal Commission of Inquiry – which later sat for 65 days and heard 186 witnesses – criticised the firefighters for failure to take effective action in the first 10 minutes after their arrival because they did not recognise the potential danger.

The company’s store, established in 1864, was one of the best known in New Zealand. The premises covered about an acre of ground. All those who died were members of the staff of about 300.

End of Simeon Street – turn off Roker Street

Opening times:

• Summer – 8.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 8.00am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

Sydenham Cemetery is one of the earlier cemeteries opened in 1896. Situated alongside Somerfield Park, it is typical of the older style, featuring mostly large memorials with concrete surrounds, but also allows for standard upright memorials and plaques on beams in the newer area.

The Somerfield Residents’ Association have adopted the cemetery and has carried out planting and tidying work.

There are no new burial plots available in the cemetery.  There are new ashes plots available and 2nd interments in burial plots or ashes interments can still take place.

Grahams Road (between Cranbrook Avenue and Gregan Street – backs onto Kendall Avenue School)

Opening times:

• Summer – 7.30am–8.30pm
• Winter – 7.00am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

Waimairi Cemetery, on the west side of the city, was opened in 1900. It comprises three main areas. The oldest part has larger monuments with concrete grave surrounds typical of that period and the second has more standard upright headstones on concrete beams.

The third area has uniform reclining memorials on beams. A special ashes area has been added on the Grahams Road frontage.

Waimairi is now only available for burials in pre-purchased plots, second interments and ashes.

Buchanans Road, Yaldhurst

Opening times:

• Summer – 8.30am–5.30pm
• Winter – 8.00am–5.30pm

Hours for Interments:

• Monday – Friday 9.00am – 4.00 pm
• Saturday – 9.00 am – 1.00 pm

The Yaldhurst Cemetery which opened in 1887 is one of the oldest cemeteries in Christchurch. It features mature trees in a quiet rural situation on the western side of Christchurch. A substantial amount of development work has occurred in this cemetery including beams, planting, a roading network and toilets in the adjoining Scout camp.

New burial and ashes plots are available in Yaldhurst Cemetery.

 

Banks Peninsula

The Council administers nine cemeteries on Banks Peninsula. These range from the steep hillside, old, well-established sites of Lyttelton to grazed land at Pigeon and Le Bons Bay.

The Akaroa Cemetery is made up of three separate adjoining cemeteries. The Lyttelton, Reserve Terrace site consists of the old Lyttelton Catholic and Public Cemeteries. The newest cemetery on the peninsula at Diamond Harbour named the Diamond Harbour Memorial Gardens was formally opened on 13 May 2002.

These cemeteries have plots available for burial and in most cases ashes interments.

Akaroa – Catholic
Located on Onuku Road. The first known burial was 1863.

Akaroa – Dissenters
Located on Cemetery Road. The first known burial was 1873.

Akaroa – Anglican
Located on Hempleman Drive. The first known burial was 1857.

Diamond Harbour
Located at Stoddart Point. The first known burial was 2002.

Duvauchelle
Located at Duvauchelle. The first known burial was 1881.

Kaituna
Located in Kaituna Valley adjacent to St Kentigen. The first known burial was 1940.

Little River
Located adjacent to St Andrews. The first known burial was 1878.

Lyttelton – Anglican
Located on Canterbury Street. The first known burial was 1851.

Lyttelton – Catholic
Located on Reserve Terrace. The first known burial was 1873.

Pigeon Bay
Located on Pigeon Bay Road. The first known burial was 1871.

Wainui
Located on Cemetery Road. The first known burial was 1890.

Waimakariri City Council

The Council administers five public cemeteries.

Rangiora and Kaiapoi cemeteries have a separate RSA Section, for Returned Service Persons burials.

Cemeteries are available to all persons, not just residents of the district. There is no additional fee for non-Waimakariri residents.

Double depth burials are not accepted at Rangiora and Kaiapoi cemeteries due to the nature of the ground – shingle at Rangiora and fine silt at Kaiapoi. Where plots have already been reserved at Kaiapoi for double depth burials these will be permitted.

There are a number of Church cemeteries throughout the district. Burial records for Church cemeteries are held by the respective Churches.

(Administered from Rangiora Service Centre)

Burial plots – divided into religious denominations
Ashes gardens
Separate RSA burial and ashes area
Location: corner East Belt and Coldstream Road, Rangiora

(Administered from Kaiapoi Service Centre)

Burial plots – Catholic section & others
Ashes plots
Separate RSA burial and ashes area
Location: Adderley Terrace, Kaiapoi

(Administered from Kaiapoi Service Centre)

(burials in reserved plots only)
Location: corner Parnham Lane and Vickery Street, Kaiapoi

(Administered from Oxford Service Centre)

Burial plots
Ashes plots
Location: Oxford Road, Oxford (main road, eastern entrance to town)

(Administered from Oxford Service Centre)

Burial plots – divided into religious denominations
398 Earlys Road, Cust

(Administered from Oxford Service Centre)

Burial plots
130 Garry River Road, Glentui

“Absolutely got it right. I know you are running a business, but your professional sensitive service meant it never felt like that”