Cummins friends revamp cemetery

FRIENDS OF THE CEMETERY: Chairwoman Jo-Anne Quigley, Claire Holman, Barb Boyce, secretary Tracey Dahlitz, Wendy Treloar, Wendy Holman and Janette Haarsma at the Cummins Cemetery gate, one of their first suggested projects.
FRIENDS OF THE CEMETERY: Chairwoman Jo-Anne Quigley, Claire Holman, Barb Boyce, secretary Tracey Dahlitz, Wendy Treloar, Wendy Holman and Janette Haarsma at the Cummins Cemetery gate, one of their first suggested projects.

Beautification work and increased privacy at the Cummins Cemetery is on the top of a priority list for a new group formed to improve the look and feel of the area.

The Friends of the Cummins Cemetery held its first meeting last year to see how many people would attend, and chairwoman Jo-Anne Quigley said she was surprised 16 people went to the first meeting.

“I was blown away (with the level of interest),” Mrs Quigley said.

Mrs Quigley, who is also a Lower Eyre Peninsula District Council councillor, said the group was seeking to work with the council to help the council improve the cemetery.

She said the group did not want to “re-invent the wheel” at the cemetery but instead wanted to help make improvements such as a new entry gate to increase privacy and installing more seating for quiet reflection.

“When you go to a cemetery it can be quite intense,” Mrs Quigley said.

“There has to be a nicer way when you’re feeling so cruddy.”

Mrs Quigley said cemeteries were “very heavily regulated” places and work on cemeteries was bound by legislation.

“We are mindful of what we can and can’t do,” she said.

Mrs Quigley said forming the group and making it official would help attract outside funding, as she was aware the council’s cemetery funding covered more cemeteries than just the Cummins Cemetery.

“Ratepayer funding is precious,” she said.