Bargoed Natural Burials was set up in 2020 by Keith Hall and his mother Sally Hall. The burial site is situated at Allt-y-Garreg nature reserve and is part of the family farm. The farm itself is 180 acres of land which has been managed mainly for wildlife for nearly thirty years. The creation of a natural burial site in the nature reserve was considered to be an appropriate way of helping to safeguard the land for wildlife habitat in the future, as well as following on with our ethos of helping to protect nature and the environment.
The natural burial site is on two of four fields that were planted with over eighteen thousand indigenous trees in 2012. The trees surround multiple wildflower meadows and are planted to mimic the natural diversity of UK woodlands.
For well over fifty years Sally has been a keen environmentalist and passionate about wildlife. She regularly monitors flora and fauna on the farm, reporting results to the BTO, Garden Moth Scheme, Butterfly Conservation, RSPB and WWBIC. She co-founded the Association for Environment Conscious Building (AECB) in 1989. Keith was brought up to respect and protect the environment and our precious flora and fauna.
Our current team (pictured) consists of Sally and Keith, Mick our gravedigger and Bryn our woodland manager. James and Karl (not pictured) also work on the general upkeep and management of the site.
Natural Burial Grounds’ People’s Award
We were delighted to have been chosen as the overall UK winner of The People’s Award for 2023. We were also named as the regional winner for Wales in 2023 (we were runner up in 2021). The award is based solely on feedback from families who have laid loved ones to rest. The judges said that our site had the highest percentage of outstanding, detailed feedback forms.
Families had taken time to write in depth accounts of their experiences and the service they had received. All staff, including our gravedigger, were mentioned as being supportive and helpful. We are members of the Association of Natural Burial Grounds (ANBG) and its Code of Conduct requires us to provide families arranging funerals with us an opportunity to complete a ANBG feedback form which is returned directly to the ANBG headquarters.
The feedback is the criteria used by the judges for the award. These awards are different to any other kind of assessment of green cemeteries. They are not about how sustainable each site is, the facilities that are available or the way the land is managed. The People’s Awards are all about the people involved, the level of service they provide, the personal touches and the impact that each natural burial ground staff member has made on the families of those who they have helped to bury.
“I wouldn’t have hoped to find such a perfect place for my beloved wife to rest.” 26/09/20
“A wonderful setting, well laid out and very quiet.” 26/09/20
“They went above and beyond anything I expected” 08/02/21
“A beautifully situated and accessible site, which both lifts the heart and gives you ease. Perfect!” 08/02/21
“The personal service was above and beyond what we would have wished.” 13/12/21
“Beautiful final resting place. Amazing support and service. Couldn’t have been better.” 18/03/22
“I am blind and in a wheelchair, the ease of access was excellent and more than suitable for wheelchairs. The burial grounds even had an all terrain wheelchair on hand in case mine wasn’t suitable. The help and kindness offered to me by the staff was above and beyond the call of duty.” 31/03/22
“The staff have made me feel like their most important customer, no more like family. Nothing was too much trouble, and mine and my wife’s wishes were paramount.” 25/08/22
List of species
A list of species we have seen on the site can be found here. If you visit and see anything that is not on the list please do let us know.