Agenda and minutes

West Norwood Cemetery Advisory Group - Wednesday 3 April 2019 5.30 pm

Venue: Room 1-04, Lambeth Town Hall, Brixton Hill, London, SW2 1RW

Contact: David Rose  Democratic Services Officer

No. Item


Welcome, introductions and declarations of interest


    The Vice-Chair welcomed all to the meeting and the following declaration of interest was raised:

    • Jill Dudman was a cremation plot owner.



Minutes of Previous Advisory Group Meeting pdf icon PDF 205 KB

    • View the background to item 2.

    To agree the minutes of the meeting held on 06 February 2019.


    RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting dated 06 February 2019 be agreed as an accurate record of proceedings.




Minutes of the previous Scheme of Management Committee pdf icon PDF 102 KB

    To note the minutes of the meeting held on 27 February 2019.


    RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting dated 27 February 2019 be noted as an accurate record of proceedings.



Operational Update pdf icon PDF 1006 KB


    Jacqueline Landy, Bereavement Services Manager; and Doug Black, Design and Conservation Manager, introduced the report and responded to questions as below:

    ·           Grass cutting had started with no complaints received to date, although the strimming of paths had been requested and were to be prepared for Mothering Sunday.

    ·           Conifer removal continued, however the March storms had seen a number of branches (but no trees) fall, but had been cleared.

    ·           The Dulwich College Community Payback was concentrating on litter-picking.

    ·           The grave excavation digger had been delivered for use across all cemetery sites.

    ·           The works on Johnston Memorial (next to Spurgeon) had been completed and the Vice-Chair noted that these were very impressive.

    ·           Officers had met with Interserve and facilities management on 26 March 2019 (Capital (Repairs) Programme), and were awaiting a start date towards the end of April.  A minimum of disruption to the public was hoped for as the works concentrated around staff areas.

    ·           The Vice-Chair noted that a package to rescue Interserve had been put together following their problems and should no longer be a cause of concern.

    ·           Lambeth’s NHLF team had been made aware of an incident involving the Maddick Mausoleum in which a child was reported to have accidentally knocked out a window pane, although it appeared that a ball had broken the glass.  The mother of the child had not yet attended the office and to make safe the pane was due for removal on 04 April 2019.  Engie had been contacted for reports and quotes (to be distributed to Advisory Group members); and the area had been closed off.  In discussion it was noted that Historic England were unlikely to provide a grant for works on such a small scale.

    ·           The NHLF had also been made aware of an incident involving the Crematorium wall in which a car handbrake had been left off and the car had hit one of the at-risk monuments on the NHLF programme.  A quote for wall had been received, but was awaited for the monument masonry; and these would also be shared with Advisory Group members.

    ·           The Bereavement Services team was now fully staffed, but there was still one outstanding vacancy in the Cemeteries Maintenance team.




Project Manager NLHF Project Update pdf icon PDF 189 KB


    Dan Thomas, Programme Manager for Capital Programmes, introduced the report, noting that the National Heritage Lottery Fund (NHLF) had awarded West Norwood Cemetery £4.6m in December, with preparatory works to start in April 2019; and answered questions as below:

    ·           Officers were progressing toward permission to start investment plan and were assembling documentation that the NLHF had requested and the diligence checklist process.

    ·           The programme (detailed in the agenda pack, page 10) remained on track with no deviation.

    ·           Raj Mistry, Director for Environment and Streetscene, was the nominated sponsor, but Kevin Crook, Assistant Director for Neighbourhoods (Parks, Leisure & Cemeteries), would be the lead officer.

    ·           The agenda pack (page 9) should detail Hubbard Road and not Hunnard Road.



Cemeteries Investment Update pdf icon PDF 431 KB


    Dan Thomas, Programme Manager for Capital Programmes, noted the report and provided the following responses to questions:

    ·           The final piece of the Letts Memorial restoration work was to be fixed in the week commencing 8 April 2019 and was a gift from the Friends of West Norwood Cemetery (FoWNC).

    ·           Work on resurfacing the Rose Garden (instead of patching) had been commissioned, with officers awaiting a start date.

    ·           Hanna Radlowska had been appointed the new Project Manager for the Cemetery with specific remit over the Catacombs and railings, with Joahanne Flaherty moving to the Brockwell Hall project and a new West Norwood Capital Works Project Manager to be recruited.

    ·           Catacombs works were detailed in the agenda pack (pages 14-16), and included:

    o    A quote had been received for improved access work to make safe, and two more were awaited.  There would be visits from suppliers on the week commencing 08 April 2019 to ensure access options’ value for money, and interim safety and remedial work.  Officers were in regular dialogue with the FoWNC, Historic England and Lambeth’s Public Health team.

    o    Public Health were to undertake a series of tests and an engineering survey to inform safety for members of the public, and was expected by April-end 2019.

    o    Catacombs roof options would be published after structural engineers had provided assessment (including health and safety, and structural assessments) and it was probable that the scaffolding would be removed in the short-term.  These options were likely to include decommissioning of current kit, repair of the current roof, and new scaffolding/membrane designs.

    o    Officers were to go to the Asset Management Sub-Group after defining concept and ideas, for seed funding for longer-term Catacombs proposals to be included in a further NHLF bid.  Officers would provide members with costs and options at the next round of meetings.

    o    One quote had been received on the railings, with more expected over the coming weeks; and officers would provide photographs and cost analysis at the next round of meetings. 

    o    The wall had been cleared of vegetation, but required more intervention than anticipated.

    ·           Jill Dudman noted that public interest in the Catacombs tour remained high and that the work would be beneficial to the Cemetery. 

    ·           The local Norwood Feast event was to begin on 07 April 2019, and officers were attempting to gather new endorsers, volunteers, and interest.