How a bespoke, beautiful memorial can preserve the memory of your loved ones
- Credit: Ipswich Borough Council
Headstones and memorials are a place for family members to reflect, as well as providing a fitting tribute to an individual’s life and interests.
A specialist stonemason can incorporate all of your cherished memories, bring forth the personality of the person and strengthen the connection to loved ones who have passed away. Ipswich Cemeteries and Crematorium, as part of Ipswich Borough Council, offer a comprehensive stonemasonry service that provides a lasting commemoration.
Emma Helyard, a director at Ipswich Cemeteries and Crematorium, spoke to us about the options family members have to immortalise their loved ones.
Q: What is the process for deciding on and creating a headstone or memorial?
A: We hold a stock of standard-sized headstones, and bespoke designs can be ordered in via our suppliers. Customers can provide us with wording and any specific designs, and our stonemasons will produce a set-out for them to visualise the end result. The entire process can take up to five months once the materials arrive and the engraving is completed.
We have a full range of marble and granite stone in stock, including popular colours and materials such as South African grey and black. If we have the desired stone in stock, our stonemason can usually create the headstone within 14 days.
Q: Can the stonemason incorporate requested designs?
A: Yes, our head stonemason has over 30 years of experience and is capable of inscribing a variety of images and scripts onto the stone. Thanks to technological advances over the past few years, the options for memorials are greater than they have ever been.
We are now able to etch photographs directly onto the stone and use any style of font for the wording, in any colour that is desired. The variety in the shape and style of memorials has increased greatly, and as a result, we can also include details of your loved one's hobbies, passions and interests.
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In the cemetery, we currently have song lyrics, poetry, pictures of dogs, golf clubs and snooker triangles carved into headstones and memorials. Whatever was important to each individual can be captured and shared with others.
Q: Does the cemetery provide continued care for headstones?
A: Yes. We are able to carry out restoration work on existing stones, repair damaged stones, conduct deep cleans and engrave any additional inscriptions.
We understand that people are not always able to come and visit the gravesite, so we've established an annual care scheme. For a yearly fee, we will carry out an annual deep clean and thoroughly refresh a headstone or memorial to ensure that it is kept in excellent condition. This can provide a lot of comfort to families knowing that their loved one’s final resting place is being well looked after.
Q: How can a unique, beautifully constructed memorial preserve the memory of a person?
A: To those who have lost a loved one, a headstone in the cemetery or a memorial in the Temple of Remembrance often signifies closure and brings a sense of peace. After a funeral has taken place and the person has been laid to rest, a stone memorial makes their resting place much more personal and unique.
Seeing their loved one's name forever etched into marble brings a lot of comfort - the importance of which cannot be understated. After someone passes away, their name doesn’t always appear in day-to-day life. However, when you visit the cemetery and see the bespoke headstone with their favourite song lyrics, it can keep the memories fresh and provide an opportunity to reflect.
For more information on the stonemasonry services available, visit ipswichcemetery.co.uk or call 01473 433580.