After all the wind and rain we have had this summer it is nice to see the sun finally come out. It is at this time of year Forest Park looks it’s nicest, with its striped lawns, colourful roses and memorial gardens.
After 7 years, the gardens have matured nicely and the variety of beautiful memorials compliment the natural surroundings. Time has flown by, as we are already seeing the first lease renewals on some of these memorials due, so just to remind owners to ensure we have all your current contact details on our records so we can keep in touch.
Over the last 12 months I have had to spend a lot of my time managing Parndon Wood Crematorium in Harlow. It is my intention to improve the standards at this older crematorium to the same high level that we pride ourselves with here at Forest Park. I wish to take this opportunity to thank the staff for all their hard work in running Forest Park in my absence.
I would also like to thank all the families who have kindly returned feedback forms after a funeral. I appreciate all the comments, as it is important to monitor the services we offer and enable us to look at ways of improving and developing in the future.
FOREST PARK CREMATORIUM PRESENTS A DONATION TO THE LOCAL ALZHEIMER’S SOCIETY
Forest Park Crematorium is very pleased to present a donation to the Alzheimer’s Society. The cheque was handed to Coral Kathro from the Redbridge service, which is situated in Goodmayes Hospital.
Jason King, Forest Park Manager said:
“It is the third year running that we have been able to support local health charities and I am delighted this year to present a donation of £1639.96 to help support the Alzheimer’s Society local services.”
As in previous years the donation has been raised from the recycling of metals that are left following the cremation service.
After we have gained the consent of families arranging a funeral any remaining metals are sensitively recycled by a non-profit making organisation. Any funds raised are then returned to the crematorium and donated to a local charity.
Coral Kathro, Support Services Manager, Alzheimer’s Society said: “We are happy and grateful to receive this donation from Forest Park. It will help us in our continued support and care for people with dementia and their families in the local area.”
DID YOU KNOW?
Memorial Maintenance & Renovation
v Granite memorials with a polished surface require very little maintenance other than an occasional wash down with water.
v Marble memorials are porous and can be washed with water and a little detergent such as washing up liquid or soap powder, refrain from using bleach as this will cause damage.
v When cleaning a memorial with a gilded inscription it is best to use the flat of your hand. Never use a brush as this will remove the gold leaf.
v Keep flowers in pots or vase containers. Rotting flowers, wreaths and metal items will damage a marble memorial as it will absorb moisture and stain.
v Old marble memorials that have discoloured with age can often be restored by skilled monumental masons.
v Forest Park offers a full renovation service for memorial’s, this includes added inscriptions, restorative cleaning, levelling and replacement parts.
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NEW CREMATION GARDEN AREA FOR 2013
Plans have been drawn up and approved for a new section of memorial gardens at Forest Park.
The new area will be similar to our ‘Garden of Memories’ section and will contain many of our most popular cremation memorials including some new types and designs.
It is anticipated this work will commence in the spring of 2013. Further updates will be posted.
FOREST PARK HIT BY ‘HAINAULT TORNADO’
On January 3rd 2012 Hainault was hit by extreme winds that were reported in the Ilford Record as the ‘Hainault Tornado’ which caused damage to many trees and properties in the surrounding area. Forest Park did not survive unscathed.
The damage to the building included roof tiles blown off the chapel and office, fences and guttering torn down and a large fibre glass gas meter cover that blew into the air, skimmed across the chapel roof only to land on a local funeral directors hearse!
Jason King recalls ‘I was off-site talking to Beverley, who is our assistant manager, on the phone when I was deafened by a loud scream only to be told the front door had just been blown open and the roof guttering disappeared down the car park’. The mess took several days to clear up and repair due to a large amount of debris that had blown onto site from the nearby business park.
BARKINGSIDE GARDEN OF REST
MAJOR INVESTMENT IN NEW ROAD SURFACES AND TREE REMOVALS.
A four year programme of improvements costing over £100,000 has been approved by the Westerleigh Group for Barkingside Garden of Rest Cemetery. The first part of the work has already been completed this July and has made such a difference to the appearance.
The improvements include the removal of the large Conifer Trees that are situated along the middle roads. These trees were planted by the council over 30 years ago and they have outgrown the space. Many are obscuring graves and they also present a safety hazard to memorials and to people crossing the roads.
Another major part of the work is relaying the roads. After time it becomes impractical to fill potholes so we are repairing the roads, with the most damaged first over the four year programme.
FUNERAL SURVEY RESULTS
As part of our commitment to improving the services we offer to the bereaved, we send out a simple feedback form following the funeral with our cremation literature. We wish to share the excellent feedback we received dated January – April 2012
- How would you rate the overall service provided by the crematorium?
Other results stated that 21% of families attended the crematorium previously for services while another 24% chose Forest Park for the settings.
A point we are currently acting on is on the feedback received regarding signs to the crematorium. New signs should soon appear on the A1112.
An interesting point was the overwhelming agreement on maintaining the natural appearance of the gardens by restricting the amount of personal items allowed. Do you agree with this policy? 97% agreed.
CHRISTMAS MEMORIAL SERVICE
Last years Christmas memorial service was the highest attended service to date, with standing room only in the chapel. We received excellent feedback on the change of format that saw the majority of the service conducted by Forest Park staff who read poems and readings. Beautiful solos were sung by a professional singer who also accompanied the popular Carols. It is intended to follow the same format this year and the service will take place on Wednesday 12th December. Please contact the office nearer the time for more details.