US Burial News

New US cemetery will serve Jewish community for generations to come

On Sunday 21st May the United Synagogue held a service to consecrate and officially open the Bushey New Cemetery. The multi-million pound development represents a milestone for the Jewish community as it is the first time in 50 years that such an occasion has taken place. The cemetery will serve thousands in our community for generations to come.

Prior to the formal opening, the Chief Rabbi and Dayan Menachem Gelley, Rosh of the London Beth Din, walked around the new site and later buried a Torah scroll as part of the consecration.

The ceremony was attended by 150 people connected to the US Burial Society including Rabbis, lay leaders and members of the Chevra Kadisha. Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis led the service, after which guests were invited to tour the facilities. 

Stephen Pack, President of the United Synagogue, said: “The New Bushey Cemetery will provide many thousands of people with a fitting resting place for their loved ones as The US and its Burial Society has done for almost 150 years. This cemetery will ensure that we continue to treat those who have suffered a bereavement in a dignified manner for many years”.

Speaking about the new cemetery, Brian Markeson, Chairman of the US Burial Society commented: “After many years of preparation, hard work and dedication, I’m delighted that the Bushey New Cemetery is officially opening. The US’ forward thinking team have created an exceptional, modern development which will ensure that The US continues to care for its members and their families to the highest of standards for many generations.”

Chairman of The US Property Committee, Peter Zinkin, said: “One of the most important aspects of the United Synagogue is that we are there for our members and their families throughout their lives and especially when dealing with the sadness of a bereavement. I’m delighted that our Burial and Property departments have used their expertise to provide for the needs of our community for generations”.

The design of the new cemetery has made use of natural features and materials, landscaping with an environmentally sensitive approach. This includes the creative use of a range of flora, fauna and water features. The modern design of the prayer halls uses ‘rammed earth’ which utilises highly compressed natural materials to form walls creating a thermally massive building which are clad with timber internally; meaning that the halls will retain heat in the cold and stay cool in the summer.

Lali Virdee, US Property Services Director added: “This visionary project makes innovative and creative use of natural materials in a fitting way that recognises the cycle of life.”

The site will hold thousands of readily accessible plots. The first funeral is expected to be conducted at the site later in the year. 

© Blake Ezra Photography 2017