For the second year running, Clandon Wood Surrey Hills Natural Burial Reserve (‘Clandon Wood’) has been voted the ‘Best Natural Burial Ground in the UK ’ by the Association of Natural Burial Grounds (‘ANBG’) Peoples’ Award run by the Natural Death Centre Charity, (‘NDC’.)
The award was based on the feedback forms returned by families who held funerals at Clandon Wood during 2014, which indicated over 97% satisfaction in three key categories: Information, Support and Advice; with a 97.7% satisfaction rating overall.
Clandon Wood, comprising 31 acres situated just outside Guildford on the edge of the Surrey Hills, has been created as a nature reserve for natural burial promoting and encouraging wildlife biodiversity. It incorporates a wildflower meadow, a lake and wetland area with a young woodland of native trees such as Oak, Hornbeam, Beach and Willow to create a serene and peaceful setting. The site also includes a stunning glass pavilion in which burial services, both secular and faith based, can be held.
To date over 300 natural burials and ashes interments have been conducted and the site caters for all individuals and families of whatever faith, belief or thinking. A further 300 people have purchased in advance graves or ashes plots for their own funeral.
Fran Hall, Manager of Clandon Wood, commented:
“We are extremely proud to be named best natural burial ground in the UK for the second year running. Receipt of this award is not only due to Clandon Wood being such a special place but also to the fantastic team who work so hard to make sure every funeral is as perfect as it can possibly be. Every ceremony held is unique and we are privileged to be involved with each one.”
All members of the ANBG are required to offer each family who has a burial at their site a feedback form to be returned directly to the NDC in order that they can monitor standards at sites across the UK. This information provides the NDC and ANBG with the details of what level of service a site is providing families, hence the title The Peoples’ Awards.
Commenting on the award Rosie Inman-Cook, Manager of The Natural Death Centre, said:
“The People’s Awards are based on the human touches that make all the difference at a time of great sadness. We are delighted to present Clandon Wood with this award on behalf of the many people who chose it as the final resting place for someone they love.”
This selection of inspiring comments from families who have used Clandon Wood provides a sense of the level of service the Clandon Wood team aim to offer:
‘It was the gentle goodbye. The meadow, the horse and cart, the peace.
One of the mourners wrote to say that it was like ‘Tess of the D’Urbervilles’…
the simple mourning of the past. Whatever it was, it felt right. I cannot speak highly enough of the team at Clandon Wood but whatever care and sympathetic help they gave before the funeral is outweighed by the after-care. I am welcomed always and after being left to visit the grave I am offered coffee and kindness -the personal touch. As a family, we are very grateful to them.’
‘The Clandon staff are great; supportive, helpful and make you feel really welcome. This is exactly what we needed at a very difficult time. Lots of our friends and relations had never attended a family led natural burial but many said they would choose it for themselves after coming to Clandon. I certainly would.’
To find out more about Clandon Wood call 01483 479614 or visit the website at www.clandonwood.com