Wollongong City Council will close Wollongong Lawn and Wollongong Cemeteries for one day on Saturday 6 June 2020.
The closure coincides with All Souls Day or Memorial Day, which is a significant date for our Macedonian community, and is a day when people visit the grave sites of their loved ones.
The Lawn cemetery at Kembla Grange and Wollongong Cemetery in the city have traditionally been very busy and crowded on All Souls Day, which is celebrated three times a year, with thousands of people from the local area and further afield taking the opportunity for reflection.
As there is currently a NSW Public Health Order in place restricting the number of people in public spaces, Council has opted to close the cemeteries for the day.
“We have taken this proactive step so that we’re not faced with having to turn people away on this date, which in previous years has meant hundreds of people visited these two cemeteries ,” Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery said.
“We’ve been working to support the Public Health Order, which is in place to reduce the risk associated with Coronavirus. This is not a Council decision in isolation. We are applying the Public Health Order and hopefully we will all soon be able to observe these wonderful faith traditions, as normal, in the near future. Honouring our dead and their memory is recognised as significant but ensuring public health at this time is paramount. It seems more equitable to simply close the cemeteries rather than denying people entry at the gate, and I thank all in our community for their understanding at this difficult time.”