Recreation in our cemeteries

We are seeing a growing number of visitors to our cemeteries for recreation, as people increasingly value them as places of tranquillity, with historic interest. We need to make sure that recreational use is compatible with the needs of people visiting the graves of loved ones.

In the Draft Cemeteries Management Plan, we have clarified that ‘passive recreation’ is allowed provided a respectful and peaceful atmosphere for the bereaved is maintained.

What we’re proposing

Passive recreation includes quiet activities such as contemplation, reading, family history research and nature study, and exercise such as walking or running (but not organised sports). Informal gatherings (such as whānau or religious groups visiting graves together) are also permitted, but events (such as a choral performance) would need to be appropriate and pre-approved.

Our cemeteries will be closed to cycling and mountain biking except on the formed roads where vehicles are permitted and on any tracks to adjacent public reserves that are clearly signposted for bike use. A speed limit of 10 km/hour will apply to all motorised vehicles and bikes using the formed roadways.

Horse riding will continue to be permitted on the formed roadway at Mākara Cemetery, provided horses are at a walking pace and riders remove all horse manure.

Dogs will continue to be permitted in our cemeteries, provided owners keep dogs on a leash and clean up after them.

The Draft Cemeteries Management Plan is open for feedback until Friday 11 December. You can have your say on recreation in Wellington City Council’s cemeteries, and other issues, by filling out the online survey.

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