The future of our cemeteries

Camberwell Old - Area Z burial area


In line with the planning permissions granted in October 2015, we are working to:

  • bring an ‘out of bounds’ area back into public use
  • create 700 burial spaces
  • increase the ecological value and biodiversity of the area by:
    • removing soil that is contaminated by unauthorised waste disposal
    • clearing scrub vegetation
    • planting 60 native trees with substantial shrub planting
    • building habitat features for, reptiles, mammals and insects
  • improve the appearance of the cemetery and  improve access by creating a new pedestrian entrance from Underhill Road
  • the dilapidated wooden fence along Underhill Road has already been replaced with new railings, improving the appearance on that boundary
  • a small amount of native planting along Underhill Road boundary has also been completed


Phase 1

Works were completed in Summer 2016.

Phase 2

The scheme requires land remodelling of existing ground levels with clearance of poor quality soils and unsuitable materials which are the result of past unauthorised waste disposal. Incorporation of additional good quality soil will be undertaken to prepare the area for burial and to make it safe for public access.

60 new trees will be planted, including native species, to improve the biodiversity and the overall nature conservation value of the area.

The works have been designed in conjunction with the London Wildlife Trust to protect and enhance the biodiversity of the cemetery. 

In order to improve public access and improve circulation, a new pathway will be created and an existing one refurbished.


  • planning permission was granted in October 2015; planning conditions have since been approved
  • faculty permission has been received from the Diocese of Southwark

Next steps

We are currently working through the legal process to extinguish rights of interment for Private graves and removal of memorials where necessary. Further information can be found on the removal of public memorials – Area Z development works page.

We aim to complete Phase 2 in 2020. You can find out more by viewing our Cemetery FAQ page.

Page last updated: 04 May 2018