Only monumental masons or specialist tradespersons approved by the cemeteries coordinator may undertake work associated with any monument in a cemetery.

Repairs and maintenance of monuments, including concrete curbing or coverings, is the responsibility of the owner of the Exclusive Right of Burial or their representative.


Arrangements for a headstone in an open cemetery are made by the family through a monumental mason(external link). The monumental mason will liaise with the Council to confirm the burial plot and apply for the necessary permit.

To make arrangements for any work associated with a monument in the following heritage cemeteries or on a pre-1950s headstone please contact the cemeteries team on 03 941 8646. 

  • Addington Cemetery
  • Akaroa French Farm
  • Barbadoes Cemetery
  • Rutherford (Woolston) Cemetery
  • Mt Magdala Cemetery

Memorial companies

Name Phone Email Website
Decra Art 03 366 3932 link)
L Robertson Memorials 03 366 5630 link)
Canterbury Monuments 03 391 4141 link)
Rhodes Monumental Masonry Ltd 03 768 0223 link)
A Touch of Stone Limited 0800 552 867 link)

Monumental work

The owner of the Exclusive Right of Burial, or in lieu of the owner the immediate next of kin (or their agent), may give permission for a monument to be erected, or for wording to be added to an existing monument.

An application for monumental work permit is required for any work being undertaken in a Council cemetery.  The monumental mason applies for the permit on behalf of the Right of Burial owner or family.

In closed and heritage listed cemeteries a special permit is required.  An application documenting the proposed works is required. If the proposed works are permitted under the global resource consent that Council holds a permit will be issued with any relevant conditions that are required to be met. 

An example of the conditions is that the work is photographed before and after the work being undertaken.  If the work is not permitted under the global resource consent the applicant would be required to apply for a separate Resource Consent. 

It is advisable that you contact the cemeteries team in the first instance to discuss the work you would like to undertake. 

Monument – materials, installation and maintenance

Monument materials

A monument must be made of granite, bronze or other non-ferrous metal, or similar suitable material approved by the Cemeteries Team prior to the installation of the monument. No stainless steel, schist, sandstone, limestone, marble, wood, fibreglass, ceramic, plastic, glass or other unsuitable material as determined by the Cemeteries Team is allowed.

No concrete work is to be painted or colour tinted.

No photographs, text, or images of any description (letters, symbols and drawings) are permitted on the reverse side of any monument.

Company names are only permitted if discreetly placed at the bottom of the front of a monument.

Monument installation

All monuments including headstones and plaques are to be constructed in accordance with NZS 4242:1995.

Monument maintenance

Maintenance is the responsibility of the owner of the Exclusive Right of Burial or their representative and monuments must be kept in good repair.  The Council does not take any responsibility for damage or vandalism to any monument.

Removal of monuments or memorials from cemeteries or graves

No person (including family and monumental masons) may remove from any plot or grave, any kerb or monument unless they have permission from the cemeteries team.

Details on the specifications of monuments for individual cemeteries is available in Section 8 of the Christchurch City Council Cemeteries Handbook [PDF, 7 MB].