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Cemeteries and Crematoria By-law, 2009
- Published in Western Cape Provincial Gazette no. 6675 on 9 November 2009
- Commenced on 9 November 2009
- [Up to date as at 9 April 2021]
2. Principles and objectivesThe purpose of this by-law is to make provision for the allocation of land for the purposes of the burial of human remains, to develop and maintain existing cemeteries, to permit its residents to dispose of a corpse by cremation, burial or any other approved method and to provide space allowing the preservation of the remains of a cremation in a dignified manner.
Establishment of cemeteries
3. Establishment of cemeteries
4. Alternatives to burialThe municipality may, if compelled to do so by environmental considerations, or the shortage of land for burial purposes, and subject to the provisions of any other law regarding the rights of a person, request that a corpse be disposed of by any other accepted method other than burial.
General provisions relating to places of interment
5. Appointment of caretaker
6. Hours of admission for public
7. Keeping to pathsExcept for purposes permitted by this by-law, a per-son may only use a path provided in the place of interment, and failure to do so constitutes an offence.
8. Prohibited conduct within cemeteries and crematoria
9. Right of interest in ground
General provisions relating to interment
10. Consent required
11. Interment times
12. RegisterThe caretaker must keep a record of all interments, and the record must contain:(a)The particulars of the person who requested the interment;(b)the particulars of the deceased person whose corpse is to be interred, such as the name, address, and identification number;(c)the date of the interment; and(d)the number of the grave in which the corpse is interred.
13. Interment of destitute persons
14. Number of corpses in one coffin
15. Dimensions of graves
17. Reservation of grave plots
18. Child’s graveThe dimensions of a child’s grave will be the same as that of an adult and more than one child may be interred in the same grave, provided that there is at least 200 millimetres of soil between the coffins and provided further that there is at least 1200 millimetres of soil between the top coffin and the natural ground level
19. Construction material of coffin
20. Number of bodies in one graveSubject to the provisions of sections 14(2), 16(1) and 18, more than one corpse may be interred in a single grave.
21. Hearse and vehicle at cemetery
22. Music inside cemeteryOnly sacred singing is allowed in a cemetery, except in the case of a police or military funeral, in which case the prior permission of the caretaker must be obtained.
23. Number on graveNo person may bury a corpse in a grave on which a peg marked with the number of the grave has not been fixed.
Exhumation of corpse and re-opening of grave
24. Disturbance of mortal remains
25. Time of exhumationNo person may exhume or cause a corpse to be ex-humed at any other time than that specified by the municipality.
26. Re-opening of grave
Care of graves
27. Shrubs and flowersThe municipality may, at any time, prune, cut down, dig up or remove any shrub, plant, flower, foliage, wreath or adornment if it becomes unsightly, is damaged or wilted.
28. Care of grave
29. Receptacles and ashes
30. Burial and exhumation of ashes
31. Cremation certificate
Erection and maintenance of memorial work
32. Consent of municipality
33. Requirements for erection of memorial work
34. Position, movement and removal of memorial work
35. Repairs to memorial work
36. Supervision of workA person engaged upon any work in a cemetery must effect the work under the supervision of the caretaker, and failure to do so constitutes an offence.
37. Conveying of memorial workNo person may convey any stone, brick or memorial work or a portion thereof within a cemetery upon a vehicle or truck, which may cause damage to the paths or grounds or structures of the cemetery.
38. Vehicle and toolsEvery person engaged in work upon a grave or plot must ensure that the vehicles, tools or appliances be of such a kind as not to contravene this by-law and by no means block any road or roads.
39. Times for bringing in material and doing work
40. Production of written permissionA person charged with a work or on his or her way to or from work within the cemetery must, upon demand from the municipality, produce the written consent issued to him or her in terms of section 32.
41. Memorial work in crematorium
42. Commonwealth War GravesThe graves of people who fell in conflict, whose graves are cared for or maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in terms of the Commonwealth War Graves Act, 1992, (Act 8 of 1992), or the South African Heritage Resources Agency in terms of the National Heritage Resources Act, 1999 (Act 25 of 1999), or by any other recognised body, or by any foreign government, may, on application to the municipality, be exempted from the requirements of this chapter.
Sections in cemetries
43. Municipality may establish sections
44. Memorial section
45. Open sectionThis section allows for the purchase of the grave only, and at a later stage may request permission to erect memorial work on payment of the prescribed tariff.
46. Aesthetic section
47. Berm section
48. Garden of Remembrance
49. Heroes’ Acre
50. By-laws applyThe provisions of this by-law apply, mutatis mutandis, to private cemeteries.
51. Establishment and continued use of cemeteries
52. Duties of proprietors
53. Use of disused cemeteries
54. Authentication and service of order, notice or other document
55. ComplaintA person wishing to lodge a complaint must lodge such complaint in writing with the municipality.
56. Notice of compliance and representations
57. CostsShould a person fail to take the measures required of him or her by notice, the municipality may recover from such person all costs incurred as a result of it acting in terms of section 56.
58. AppealA person whose rights are affected by a decision delegated by the municipality may appeal against that decision by giving written notice of the appeal and the reasons therefor in terms of section 62 of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act (Act 32 of 2000) to the municipal manager within 21 days of the date of the notification of the decision.
59. TariffsShould a person fail to pay a prescribed tariff, the municipality may act in accordance with the provisions of its Customer Care and Revenue Management By-law.
60. Offences and PenaltiesA person who contravenes any provision or fails to comply with any provision of this by-law commits an offence and shall on conviction be liable to—(a)a fine or imprisonment, or either such fine or imprisonment or to both such fine and such imprisonment and,(b)in the case of a continuing offence, to an additional fine or an additional period of imprisonment or to such additional imprisonment without the option of a fine or to both such additional fine and imprisonment for each day on which such offence is continued and,(c)a further amount equal to any costs and expenses found by the court to have been incurred by the municipality as result of such contravention or failure.
62. Liaison forums in community
63. Conflict with other legislationIn the event of any conflict between any provision of this by-law and National and Provincial legislation, standards, policies or guidelines, the National and Provincial legislation, standards, policies or guidelines shall prevail.
64. Revocation of by-lawsThe provisions of any by-laws previously promulgated by the municipality or by any of the disestablished municipalities now incorporated in the municipality, are hereby repealed as far as they relate to matters provided for in this by-law, and insofar as it has been made applicable to the municipality by the authorisation for the execution of powers and functions in terms of section 84(3) of the Local Government: Municipal Structures Act, Act 117 of 1998.
65. Short title and commencementThis by-law may be cited as the Cemeteries and Crematoria By-law, and commences on the date of publication thereof in the Provincial Gazette.
- Entire By-law
- 1. Interpretation
- 2. Principles and objectives
- Chapter 1 – Establishment of cemeteries
- Chapter 2 – General provisions relating to places of interment
- Chapter 3 – General provisions relating to interment
- Chapter 4 – Burial
- Chapter 5 – Exhumation of corpse and re-opening of grave
- Chapter 6 – Care of graves
- Chapter 7 – Cremation
Chapter 8 – Erection and maintenance of memorial work
- 32. Consent of municipality
- 33. Requirements for erection of memorial work
- 34. Position, movement and removal of memorial work
- 35. Repairs to memorial work
- 36. Supervision of work
- 37. Conveying of memorial work
- 38. Vehicle and tools
- 39. Times for bringing in material and doing work
- 40. Production of written permission
- 41. Memorial work in crematorium
- 42. Commonwealth War Graves
- Chapter 9 – Sections in cemetries
- Chapter 10 – Private cemeteries
- Chapter 11 – Disused cemeteries
Chapter 12 – Miscellaneous
- 54. Authentication and service of order, notice or other document
- 55. Complaint
- 56. Notice of compliance and representations
- 57. Costs
- 58. Appeal
- 59. Tariffs
- 60. Offences and Penalties
- 61. Exemptions
- 62. Liaison forums in community
- 63. Conflict with other legislation
- 64. Revocation of by-laws
- 65. Short title and commencement
History of this By-law
9 November 2009 this versionPublished in Western Cape Provincial Gazette no. 6675By-law commences.