Planting native trees and preserving natural habitats are not the only way we help the environment at Eden Valley. Through our working practices we have a negligible effect on the landscape and working with other eco-friendly businesses we help to promote sustainable practices.
One of the most important principles at Eden Valley is that all graves are hand dug. This ensures that graves are a tailor made fit for each coffin, but also that the impact on the ground around the grave is kept to a minimum. Machine diggers and other heavy machinery used at other burial grounds, not only pollute the atmosphere by running on diesel but they also churn up the ground destroying vegetation and killing insects and wildlife.
Along with hand dug graves coffins or shrouds that people are interred in at Eden Valley must be bio-degradable. This not only promotes the use of sustainable materials such as willow, wicker and bamboo but also insures that what goes into the ground at Eden Valley has a positive or neutral effect on the soil. The deceased with their coffin or shroud are taken on their final journey, up to grave side, on our wooden hand-bier. A quiet, simple, carbon free ride.
Each tree that we plant has a plastic tree guard for protection and a wooden stake to help stabilize the tree. As often as we can, tree guards and stakes for newly planted trees are taken from older established trees that have been planted several years ago. These older trees no longer need the guards for protection or stakes for support so they can be reused on new trees, reducing our plastic usage. Wooden stakes used at Eden Valley are now often cut at the site from mature willow trees. These fast growing trees will quickly regrow new branches that can be used for the same job in the future.
Several benches at Eden Valley give visitors a place to sit and appreciate their surroundings. We have built these benches using wooden pallets and other reclaimed wood. Re-using this wood is not only good for the environment but also helps us to keep our costs low, as we are not paying for expensive infrastructure on the site. This helps to allow us to keep our prices affordable and not charging thousands of pounds for a burial plot, unlike some other natural burial grounds.
Our toilet facilities are also sustainable. A compost toilet provides a comfortable, chemical free comfort stop. The building is also made from wood, in keeping with the site and the environment.