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Every penny we spend on the Churchyard has to come from fundraising: we receive no money from the local council, government or the central church.  If you would like to help us, please see our Finance pages under the "More" heading in the menu bar, above. 

With effect from January 2022, the churchyard is closed to new burials as we are full.  Previously agreed interments, known as reservation by faculty, will be honoured but we have no spaces left for new graves now. 

In 2023, our annual Commemoration of the Faithful Departed, known as All Souls Day, is on Thursday 2nd November.  All are welcome to Mass here, and the sung Mass for All Souls will be at 7.30pm.  You can email Father Dane to ask for individuals to be remembered at the Mass. 

Funerals at St Mary's

Please see below for Churchyard information

The first step when booking is a funeral is usually to consult a Funeral Director. 

If you would like a funeral in St Mary's then they will contact us to arrange a suitable time. 

We offer funerals to everyone who lived in our parish at the time they died, or else those who died in our parish.


We bury ashes in the churchyard.  We don't scatter: ashes are buried either loose or in a biodegradable container either in an existing grave or in a new ashes plot.  We allow an ashes tablet of 12" x 12" in a mid-grey colour.  To find out more about the interment of ashes, or to book a service, you need to come along on a Sunday after the 10am Mass. 

You need to apply for permission to bury ashes:

It is unlawful for you to bury or scatter ashes in a churchyard, burial ground or any other place

without the permission of the landowner and payment of any statutory or other fees.

All interments in our churchyard require the full permission of the Vicar and the use of the Church's rites,

anything else constitutes unlawful disposal of remains and the Church will take action accordingly. 

We pray each day for those who have died,
do let us know if you would like us
to pray for someone, which we will do
whether or not their funeral will be at St Mary's.

Churchyard & Funerals: Feature

The Churchyard

St Mary's has the only burial ground in Swanley.  We accept for burial anyone who lived in the Church of England parish of Swanley at the time of their death, was a member of St Mary's electoral roll (that's not the same roll used for voting) or who died in the Church of England parish of Swanley.  We do not accept for burial, nor is it possible to reserve a plot in the churchyard for, anyone who does not meet these criteria.

The Churchyard
is governed
by law

In order to have any memorial, or any item on a grave, it is necessary to seek permission.

Plots in the Churchyard
cannot be bought

No matter when someone was buried in the churchyard, ownership remains with the Church.

The Vicar can only
allow a small range
of memorials

If you would like something he cannot allow, then you can apply for permission from the diocese of Rochester.  This is called a faculty.  This will only be granted if it is in keeping with the Church's rules.

The Churchyard Regulations

The Churchyard Regulations govern what you are allowed.  Please see the yellow button above to click for a copy of the regulations.

Churchyard & Funerals: Feature
Parish Map

This is a map of our parish: to be buried in the churchyard you must, at the time of your death, have been living inside the green line or you must have died in the parish. 

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