Cemetery Maintenance

A Multi-Purpose Mandate


As the property owner, the Denman Island Memorial Society (DIMS) is responsible for the on-going care of the Cemetery land. Given that the Cemetery is a natural burial ground, this obligation entails some activities that differ from those customary in a conventional cemetery.

Ongoing maintenance involves ensuring that the Cemetery is respected as a sacred place for the disposition for human remains. It also involves ensuring the land is a safe place for people spending time in the Cemetery or walking through it to reach Central Park. Lastly, maintenance involves ensuring that, over time, the ecological values of the land are protected and restored, as required by the Conservation Covenant.

A peaceful atmosphere is sought to honour the use of the land as a cemetery. Vehicular access is restricted to those vehicles required for Cemetery operations, including transport of the disabled for a burial ceremony. As well, dogs must be leashed, and horses are only allowed when part of a burial ceremony. A large sign at the main Cemetery entrance on Denman Road asks visitors to respect the tranquility of the Cemetery as a place for reflection and remembrance.

To address public safety, the Allée and the paths in the Scattering Area are kept free of fallen trees and branches. As well, the Gathering Space is maintained as a welcoming place where people can walk freely and enjoy spending time in an attractive setting. Signage encourages visitors to stay on the Cemetery paths.



To restore the natural ecology of the Burial Sections after their use for burials, plants may be transplanted from other areas of the cemetery to encourage the growth of low vegetation as a means of crowding out undesirable plants. These areas are then left undisturbed, except for the periodic removal of non-indigenous plants that would spread quickly and crowd out the native plants. Although the Gathering Space is landscaped, all grasses and other plants used here are indigenous to the area and no chemical fertilizers or biocides are used.