Recently we have been updating our stories and wanted to share the story behind the natural burial meadow at Aylesbury, and why it is so special to Sally the custodian and the families that use it ...
In 2012 Sally called us at Leedam Natural Burials on behalf of her mother Dorothy: “We own a lovely field in rolling countryside with excellent views towards the Chiltern Hills in the middle of Buckinghamshire, which we feel would be an excellent site for a natural burial ground...”
Soon afterwards, I had the pleasure of meeting Sally and Dorothy at Meadle and after a meeting around the farmhouse kitchen table (and a lively introduction to the peacocks, dogs and cats), we visited ‘Long Furlong’ as the meadow is known, for the first time. I could immediately see why this spot had been chosen. The gently rising ground of the meadow has long-ranging views across the flatlands of Aylesbury Vale and fine views of the Chiltern escarpment. It had that special something that every natural burial ground needs. A sense of place; a reason to be there.
Dorothy Brock and her daughter Sally impressed me too. The land has been in their family for generations and they are, to use a farming term, hefted to the land. Straight-talking, no-nonsense, warm and enthusiastic, we shook hands that afternoon and began to make things happen.
Dorothy Brock and her family have created the natural burial ground in Aylesbury as you see it now, with the lightest of touches, and with a great understanding and knowledge of the indigenous plant life and animals. The pond, in particular, planted with wild plants from other ponds on the farm has created a wonderfully rich new habitat for wildlife.
Sadly Dorothy died on 20th January 2017 and took up her place in the meadow on 3rd February 2017 - a truly remarkable woman whose vision for the land and natural meadow burials has become a reality. Sally now manages the burial ground with her husband Craig, cousin Howard and Paul. Between them, they have planted the hedges and trees, planted wildflowers and pond-plants, managed and maintained the land and have been the welcoming people that everyone meets when they visit or attend a funeral. It is tremendous to hear from Sally that this is the best ‘job’ she has ever had, and it shows in the way that the meadow is so popular and so well cared for.
If you want to find out more about Aylesbury Natural Burial Meadow don't hesitate to give Sally a call.
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