Common Questions

Dealing with the death of a loved one and organising a memorial or burial can feel overwhelming. We've included some of the questions we're often asked below.

Our staff are always happy to answer your questions and provide support. If you need more information, please call us on (02) 4227 7780, or see our Contact Us page for other ways to get in touch.

Questions about memorials

A memorial is an object used to remember, or commemorate, a person who has died.

Memorials are often created where a person's remains, such as their ashes, are placed, but they can also be created without remains.

A memorial acknowledges a life, provides a focal point and place for families and friends to grieve and reflect, and creates a permanent record for future generations and genealogy.

At Wollongong Memorial Gardens, we offer the following types of memorials:

  • Walls where ashes can be placed in a container with a plaque
  • Gardens where ashes can be placed in a container with a plaque
  • Gardens where ashes can be scattered, and a plaque placed
  • Sites where plaques can be placed with no remains.

Memorial options that can be used now, or purchased in advance for future use, can be found on our Sites for Memorials page.

If you have any questions about memorials, please call us on (02) 4227 7780.

Every situation is unique, but there are a few main steps that are usually involved in creating a memorial:

  • Choosing a type of memorial and a memorial location
  • Deciding on the words to go on the plaque
  • Holding a ceremony to remember the person who has died.

We can guide you through the process of creating a memorial and answer any questions you have.

You can plan for the future and make arrangements now for your future memorial. This can give you and your family peace of mind, and make sure your wishes will be followed when you pass away.

"In perpetuity" means lasting forever.

Many people don't realise that burial and memorial sites purchased through commercial providers will often only be guaranteed for a limited number of years.

At Wollongong Memorial Gardens, all of our memorial and burial sites are provided in perpetuity. This means they will be permanent, and our dedicated team will continue to care for your site for future generations, with no ongoing costs.

Please contact us to check availability next to an existing memorial. We will try to help family members stay together where possible.

To help make sure family members' memorials can be placed together, we recommend you consider pre-purchasing a family memorial site. See our list of Sites for Memorials for available options.

Purchasing a family plot can give you peace of mind, and ease the burden on family members left behind.

The placement of plaques, and placement or scattering of ashes at any of our locations must be done by Wollongong Memorial Gardens staff. However, family members can request to be present at these events.

Fees apply to scatter ashes. There is an additional cost for family members to be present during the placement or scattering of ashes. Current fees are shown below.

If you have a question, or want to be present when a plaque or ashes are placed, please call us on (02) 4227 7780.

Fees for scattering ashes

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering cremated remains GSTY Current Fee$63.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering of Neonatal cremated remains in nominated garden GSTY Fee DescriptionFree

Fees for family attendance

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily Attendance at Placement of cremated remains - weekdays GSTY Current Fee$100.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily attendance at placement of cremated remains Saturday between 9.00am -11.00am only GSTY Current Fee$464.00

If ashes are to be placed in one of our memorial walls or gardens, you do not need to buy a special, or decorative urn. Ashes placed in walls or gardens will generally be provided in a container designed to fit the site.

Our range of decorative urns are for people who wish to keep the ashes of their loved one at home.

You can also choose a miniature or keepsake urn to keep a small amount of ashes, then scatter or place the remainder at a memorial site.

You may be able to relocate a memorial and move family members together.

Conditions will apply to the relocation of memorials. Please call us on (02) 4227 7780 to discuss details.

Yes. You do not have to be in possession of a person's remains to make a memorial.

You're welcome to place fresh flowers using the vases provided at our sites. However, we ask that you do not place other items, like toys, photographs or mementos.

Our staff regularly maintain memorial and burial sites, and reserve the right to remove any unauthorised items.

Please note that some grave monuments may be designed to include a candle holder.

You cannot plant trees or flowers at our memorial sites.

Our skilled team of gardeners work hard to make sure the gardens at our sites are planted appropriately and well maintained to provide a peaceful setting for everyone.

We keep a register of all burials and memorials created at our various locations.

Some of this information is made publicly available at no cost to people who search our records.

This information can be helpful for people researching their family history, or who want to find the final resting place of their loved ones.

Information from our records that we share publicly includes:

  • The name of the deceased person
  • The date of their death
  • A short description of the memorial location.

You may be able to inter ashes at the existing grave of a family member or partner. This can be a meaningful way to keep loved ones together.

There are laws that apply, please call us on (02) 4227 7780 for more details.

Fees for scattering ashes

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering cremated remains GSTY Current Fee$63.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering of Neonatal cremated remains in nominated garden GSTY Fee DescriptionFree

Fees for family attendance

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily Attendance at Placement of cremated remains - weekdays GSTY Current Fee$100.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily attendance at placement of cremated remains Saturday between 9.00am -11.00am only GSTY Current Fee$464.00

Questions about burials

You will need to contact a funeral director to help you with the process of arranging a burial. Your funeral director will liaise with us throughout the process, but you're also welcome to contact us at any time with questions.

Steps that are typically involved in arranging a burial include:

  • Choosing a burial site or arranging access to a site that has been pre-purchased.
  • Holding a funeral or service
  • Arranging a marker for the grave, such as a plaque, headstone or monument.

We take pride in meeting the cultural needs of our community. Our sites include specified areas for different faiths, as well as nondenominational areas.

You can also plan for the future and make arrangements for your future burial. This can give you and your family peace of mind, and make sure your wishes will be followed when you pass away.

"In perpetuity" means lasting forever.

Many people don't realise that burial and memorial sites purchased through commercial providers will often only be guaranteed for a limited number of years.

At Wollongong Memorial Gardens, all of our memorial and burial sites are provided in perpetuity. This means they will be permanent, and our dedicated team will continue to care for your site for future generations, with no ongoing costs.

Yes, you may make a coffin, as long as it meets Public Health guidelines. It must also be made of approved materials, and meet size requirements.

Please talk to your funeral director for advice about coffins.

Strict public health rules apply to the handling of bodies. You will generally need a funeral director or mortuary transport service to transport the body.

If you have any special requests, please ask your funeral director for advice.

No. We require people to select from our range of cemetery plaques, or use an approved monumental mason to create a headstone or monument.

This is to make sure grave markers are safe and will last a long time. It also helps to keep a high standard and consistent appearance at our cemeteries.

We will try and help family members stay together, however it may not always be possible to arrange this.

If you would like to make sure members of your family will be buried together, we recommend you consider pre-purchasing one or more burial sites, depending on availability. See our list of burial sites for available options.

Many of our burial sites can accommodate two interments (or burials) within one grave. This is a common way of ensuring that family members can be buried together.

Please contact us for advice about sites for family members.

You're welcome to place fresh flowers using the vases provided at our sites. However, we ask that you do not place other items, like toys, photographs or mementos.

Our staff regularly maintain memorial and burial sites, and reserve the right to remove any unauthorised items.

Please note that some grave monuments may be designed to include a candle holder.

You cannot plant trees or flowers at our memorial sites.

Our skilled team of gardeners work hard to make sure the gardens at our sites are planted appropriately and well maintained to provide a peaceful setting for everyone.

We keep a register of all burials and memorials created at our various locations.

Some of this information is made publicly available at no cost to people who search our records.

This information can be helpful for people researching their family history, or who want to find the final resting place of their loved ones.

Information from our records that we share publicly includes:

  • The name of the deceased person
  • The date of their death
  • A short description of the memorial location.

Questions about funerals and services

No, holding a funeral service is not compulsory.

You can make arrangements through your funeral director for burial or cremation without a service.

You may also choose to hold a private or small ceremony, rather than one that is open to a wide circle of people. Please talk to your funeral director for advice.

There's no one style that applies to all funerals.

Historically, many people wore black or dark colours to funerals. While this is still followed sometimes, it is not automatically the case anymore.

Some families may ask guests to wear something that had meaning to the deceased person, such as a particular colour, uniform or theme.

If there aren't any special instructions, these general guidelines should cover most services:

  • Avoid anything too casual (eg tracksuit pants), revealing or 'loud'.
  • Make sure you are tidy and well groomed
  • Stick to subdued colours.

You may also be able to contact the funeral director overseeing the service for advice.

If the funeral notice does not say otherwise, it should be fine to send flowers, particularly if you are unable to attend the service.

Other options which may also be acceptable include:

  • Sending flowers to the family's home, rather than to the funeral service
  • Sending a sympathy card or personal letter
  • Sending an alternative to cut flowers, such as a potted plant or fruit basket.

Some families may ask that people do not bring or send flowers to a funeral. It is also common to ask for a donation to a charity instead (in lieu) of flowers. You should always respect and follow any special requests.

In most cases the immediate family will sit in the front rows, with extended family in the following rows, and then friends and colleagues.

However, some cultures or religions may have different traditions, so feel free to ask when you arrive at the service if you're not sure.

You should aim to support the family of the person who has died, and not do anything to make them uncomfortable.

Some general advice that should apply in most cases includes:

  • Don't be late. Plan ahead so you have plenty of time to get there.
  • Turn off your phone, or switch it to silent as soon as you arrive.
  • Make sure you have tissues or a clean handkerchief.
  • Sign the guest book if there is one.
  • If you're not sure where to sit or what to do, ask any ushers or the funeral director, or other guests.
  • Follow any instructions and take part during the service if you can. For example, join in singing, and stay quiet in moments of silence. It's also ok to laugh if a speaker shares funny stories about the deceased person.
  • After the service, wait for the immediate family to leave first - don't rush for the exit.
  • If you're going to a service for someone from a culture or religion that you're not familiar with, try to do your research first. An internet search, or a call to the funeral director for advice, can help to point you in the right direction.

This decision should be made on a case-by-case basis.

Allowing children to attend a funeral can be helpful for them to deal with loss.

For babies and very young children, think about whether they'll be able to sit through the service without disrupting others. If they may not be able to do this, either try to make other arrangements for them, or be ready to quickly take them out of the service if they become disruptive.

For children who are a bit older, talk to them before the funeral to help them understand what to expect. During the service, keep them close so you can comfort or guide them if needed.

Questions about ashes

Ashes can be scattered in many places, and it's important to choose the right location.

Before you scatter ashes, you must get permission from whoever owns or manages the site you have in mind.

Wollongong Memorial Gardens

Our specially designed gardens provide an ideal location to scatter ashes and place a plaque as a lasting tribute to your loved one. You can also rest easy knowing that the site will be well cared for and available to visit for many generations.

See our Create a Memorial pages or call us on (02) 4227 7780 for more information.

Public places

Public places such as parks, beaches, rivers, bush land and even sporting fields can be popular locations for people to scatter ashes.

Many of these public places are owned or managed by local councils. Others may be owned or managed by the State Government. Your local council is a good starting point to find out who the owner of a public space is, and how to get permission to scatter ashes.

Keep in mind that if you do get permission to scatter ashes in a public place, you will most likely not be able to include a plaque or tribute at that location.

At home or on private property

You can scatter ashes at home or on private property, but there are a few things you should consider:

  • If you're not the property owner, you will need to get permission of the owner first
  • You or your family may not always live at that location
  • It is possible that your current home or garden could be removed or replaced to make way for a new development in the future.

The placement of plaques, and placement or scattering of ashes at any of our locations must be done by Wollongong Memorial Gardens staff. However, family members can request to be present at these events.

Fees apply to scatter ashes. There is an additional cost for family members to be present during the placement or scattering of ashes. Current fees are shown below.

If you have a question, or want to be present when a plaque or ashes are placed, please call us on (02) 4227 7780.

Fees for scattering ashes

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering cremated remains GSTY Current Fee$63.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering of Neonatal cremated remains in nominated garden GSTY Fee DescriptionFree

Fees for family attendance

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily Attendance at Placement of cremated remains - weekdays GSTY Current Fee$100.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily attendance at placement of cremated remains Saturday between 9.00am -11.00am only GSTY Current Fee$464.00

If you want to take ashes overseas, you will need to make sure you have the correct paperwork and get permission from the country you are going to.

You should contact the consulate of the country the ashes will be taken to for advice about any local requirements you will need to meet.

If the ashes are of someone who has recently died, you can also ask your funeral director for advice.

You may be able to inter ashes at the existing grave of a family member or partner. This can be a meaningful way to keep loved ones together.

There are laws that apply, please call us on (02) 4227 7780 for more details.

Fees for scattering ashes

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering cremated remains GSTY Current Fee$63.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameScattering of Neonatal cremated remains in nominated garden GSTY Fee DescriptionFree

Fees for family attendance

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 items
Parent HierachyArea Fee NameFee Name GSTGST Current Fee (incl. GST)Current Fee (incl. GST)
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily Attendance at Placement of cremated remains - weekdays GSTY Current Fee$100.00
Parent HierachyWollongong Memorial Gardens And Cemeteries | Miscellaneous Fees Fee NameFamily attendance at placement of cremated remains Saturday between 9.00am -11.00am only GSTY Current Fee$464.00