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Our cemeteries <h2 class="sectHeading">Burials and cremations</h2><p>The City has regulations in place to ensure that the body of your loved one is treated with care. Our laws and regulations for burial take into consideration the practices and beliefs of religious and cultural groups.</p><p>We may set aside certain sections in our cemeteries for members of a specific faith, religion or cultural group. This occurs when the burial requirements of a group include an arrangement of graves that is different to the standard layout of our cemeteries, such as the mausoleum at the <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Family%20and%20home/see-all-city-facilities/our-service-facilities/cemeteries/Maitland%20Cemetery">Maitland Cemetery</a>.</p> <span> <div class="notification with-heading dark-copy pink bg-light-grey"><div class="graphic with-border"> <i class="info note">​​​</i> </div><div class="desc"><h4>COVID-19 guidelines for funerals, burials and cremations</h4><p>Precautionary measures are in place at cemeteries to protect funeral attendees and cemetery staff from <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/general/coronavirus-updates">Covid-19</a>. Refer to the <a href="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/documentcentre/Documents/Procedures%2c%20guidelines%20and%20regulations/CCT-COVID-19_Fatality_Management.pdf" target="_blank">Covid-19 Fatality Management FAQs</a> for more details.</p></div></div></span> <h4> Remember:</h4><ul><li>You must give at least 8 hours' notice before you make any alterations to the day or time previously arranged for the burial.</li><li>The coffin must be inspected before burial.</li><li>If the required documents have not been submitted, the City can refuse permission to bury a body.</li><li>You may conduct a religious ceremony during the burial service without the permission of the City</li></ul><p>If you would like to bury a body in any way other than what the City regulates, you must apply for permission to the City. Your undertaker will assist you with the application process.</p><p>Whether you are burying or cremating your deceased loved one, make sure that you adhere to our <a href="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/documentcentre/Documents/Bylaws%20and%20policies/Cemeteries%20Crematoria%20and%20Funeral%20Undertakers%20By-law%202011.pdf" target="_blank">Cemeteries, Crematoria and Funeral Undertakers By-law</a>.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Undertaker​​​​​​​</h2><p>When planning a funeral, the law states that you must be assisted by an undertaker, who can help you with the practical challenges. All undertakers are officially registered with the City. They will guide you through all of the legalities of declaring a death, arranging a burial and paying the cemetery booking office.</p><h4> Funeral undertakers help with:</h4><ul><li>selecting a coffin;</li><li>buying a grave;</li><li>preparing the body for burial;</li><li>transporting the body;</li><li>organising all of the official documentation required on your behalf;</li><li>organising flowers for the funeral, if possible; and</li><li>sending the remains of your loved one to other parts of the country, or overseas, if required.</li></ul><p>The <a href="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/documentcentre/Documents/Bylaws%20and%20policies/Cemeteries%20Crematoria%20and%20Funeral%20Undertakers%20By-law%202011.pdf" target="_blank">Cemeteries, Crematoria and Funeral Undertakers By-law</a> regulates the duties of funeral undertakers and aims to provide peace of mind for the bereaved.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​What is cremation?</h2><p>During cremation, a person's remains are reduced to ash when exposed to high temperatures and vaporisation. Cremation is becoming a preferred choice for many families due to its reduced cost compared with burial expenses. Our <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Family%20and%20home/See-all-City-facilities/Our-service-facilities/Cemeteries/Maitland%20Cemetery">Maitland Crematorium</a> has had two additional cremators installed to service the increasing demand for cremation.</p><p> <strong>Please note:</strong> You will need special permission to be present at the crematorium during cremation. Speak to your undertaker who can apply for permission on your behalf, at an added cost.</p><h4>Scattering or burying the ashes</h4><p>When scattering the ashes in a public place such as the mountain, the sea or a botanical garden, be sure to check which way the wind is blowing so that people in the area are not affected.</p><div class="notification with-heading white-copy blue bg-navy"><div class="graphic no-border"> <i class="info caring">​​</i></div><div class="desc"><h4>Did you know?</h4><p> <b>A Caring City:</b> Some public graveyards have specific gardens where you can scatter or bury ashes. These are known as Gardens of Remembrance.​</p></div></div><p>Many of Cape Town's public graveyards have tastefully designed boxes and walls available where you can place an urn containing ashes behind a personalised memorial plaque. Ashes can only be buried in a grave if the plot belongs to a family member.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Public graveyards</h2><p>The <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Departments/Recreation%20and%20Parks%20Department">Recreation and Parks Department</a> maintains and manages numerous cemeteries in the Cape Town municipal area. Approximately half of these cemeteries can be used for new burials, and the remaining cemeteries are either full or dormant.</p><h4>Mausoleums, crypts and niches</h4><p>A mausoleum is above-ground grave where a coffin is entombed in a sealed crypt. You can place a personalised granite plaque on the front of the crypt. The same procedure applies for a niche, which is a hole in the wall or surface that can fit a small urn containing cremated remains.</p><p>An advantage of choosing a mausoleum as the final resting place for your loved one's remains is that the City will be responsible for the cleanliness and upkeep of the site. Crypts can be used for second burials and can also receive urns.</p><p>For further information, contact your local cemetery booking office.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Making arrangements</h2><p>Contact a funeral parlour of your choice. They will apply for the cremation or burial, and perform the ceremony according to your wishes. <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Family%20and%20home/See-all-City-facilities/Our-service-facilities/Cemeteries/">Find a cemetery in your area</a> and view the relevant booking information.</p><h4>Cemetery booking office opening hours:</h4><p>Monday to Friday<br> 07:30 - 16:00</p><h4> More information</h4><p>If you would like to find out more about the regulations and practical matters concerning funerals or burials, contact our <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Departments/Recreation%20and%20Parks%20Department">Recreation and Parks Department</a>.</p><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Choosing a coffin</h2><p>While you may choose a coffin for the deceased based on the design that you feel is appropriate, you should also bear in mind the impact that the coffin you select may have on the environment.</p><p>Regulations for coffins require that they must be made of natural wood or any other non-toxic material (no varnish, paint or glue is permitted). Even if you choose cremation over burial, a coffin must still be used in the cremation process.</p><h4>Regulations for coffins used in cremations:</h4><ul><li>The coffin may only contain flammable material, such as clothing, shoes and other adornments.</li><li>Jewellery is not allowed.</li><li>A pacemaker must be removed from the body before cremation to prevent explosion. (Pacemeker batteries contain mercury which disperses into the atmosphere and damages the cremator).</li><li>The City may remove any non-flammable material from the coffin before cremation.</li><li>​​​​​​​Coffins cannot be opened in the crematorium nor can the body be removed from the coffin unless the City has granted permission.</li></ul> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Reburials and exhumations</h2> <h4>If your loved one is buried in a graveyard in Cape Town, you can move their remains to:</h4> <ul><li>another section of the same graveyard;</li><li>another graveyard in Cape Town; or</li><li>another graveyard anywhere in the world.</li></ul></span> <p>If their remains are buried outside of Cape Town, you can also apply for permission to move these remains to a burial site in one of the City's graveyards.</p><h4>Please note:</h4><ul><li>An exhumation can only proceed when written approval and notification is received from the Provincial Department of Health, as well as from the City and from the Head or Principal Environmental Health Practitioner.</li><li>Proof is required that a competent and reliable undertaker will perform the exhumation and reburial in a manner that will not create conditions that are either offensive or that will pose a health risk.</li><li> The notification for exhumation or reburial must be submitted by the <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Departments/Recreation%20and%20Parks%20Department">Recreation and Parks Department</a> to the Environmental Health Office at least five working days before the approved exhumation date.</li><li>The exhumation and reburial must take place without delay.</li><li>Any changes after approval of the exhumation request needs to be communicated within five working days before the event to the <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Departments/Recreation%20and%20Parks%20Department">Recreation and Parks Department</a>. (This applies to a change in exhumation date due to unforeseen circumstances).</li><li>You may only arrange for a body to be exhumed 18 months after burial unless you have a court order stating otherwise.   </li></ul><h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​City Connect</h2> <span> <div class="notification with-heading white-copy yellow bg-darker-grey"><div class="graphic">​ <i class="info citycard">​​</i>​</div><div class="desc"><h4>You may also want to:</h4><p> <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Health-and-safety/Burial-and-exhumation/Apply-for-an-undertaker-certificate">Apply for an undertaker certificate</a>.</p><p> <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Health-and-safety/Burial-and-exhumation/Apply-for-exhumation">Apply for exhumation</a>.</p><p> <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Health-and-safety/Burial-and-exhumation/Apply-for-the-burial-or-cremation-of-destitute-persons">Apply for the burial or cremation of destitute persons</a>.</p><p> <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Apply/Health-and-safety/Burial-and-exhumation/nominate-or-propose-a-memorial">Nominate or propose a memorial</a>.</p></div></div></span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Contact us</h2><h4> <a href="https://www.capetown.gov.za/Departments/Recreation%20and%20Parks%20Department">Recreation and Parks Department</a></h4><p> <em>Telephone:<br><a>021 400 4688</a> / <a>021 400 3734</a> / <a>021 400 3062</a> / <a>021 400 9534</a> / <a>021 400 1813</a><br><br> Email:<br><a href="mailto:rp.enquiries@capetown.gov.za">rp.enquiries@capetown.gov.za</a></em></p>GP0|#12ed3220-d149-4f34-9ca1-18980ec772bb;L0|#012ed3220-d149-4f34-9ca1-18980ec772bb|Our cemeteries;GTSet|#ef3a64a2-d764-44bc-9d69-3a63d3fadea1;GPP|#042ff1e5-01d6-446c-a527-da4418dfbc7a;GPP|#063a6668-d6cb-4c45-adaf-f559697b85fd;GPP|#245ec7aa-a528-4cd3-bcac-597c292db711Find out about various interment options including burial in graves or a mausoleum or cremation.0

 

 

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