Columbarium installed at Ball's Cemetery - June 22, 2017
BY DENNY SCOTT
Visitors to Ball’s Cemetery may notice a signification addition to the private necropolis: a 144 niche columbarium.
On Tuesday, June 12, the 15-tonne structure was delivered to the cemetery and, using dry-ice to safely lower it, installed on a cement pad near the north-east corner of the cemetery.
Daryl Ball, a representative of the cemetery’s board of trustees and whose family is the site’s namesake, explained that the $28,000 project, which included $24,000 for the columbarium, will serve the cemetery for decades to come.
“We have 10 to 15 burials a year and seven of those are cremations,” he said. “There are 144 niches, meaning 72 couples can be interred.”
Ball said some people prefer to be buried in the ground, even if they are cremated, so the number of individuals placed in the columbarium will likely mean it should last for decades.
The columbarium was placed in honour of the Jackson and Kai families, specifically Don and Margaret (nee Jackson) Kai in honour of their donation to the cemetery.
Ball explained the Kais are from Wingham and the Jacksons are from Auburn and Don and Margaret lived in Toronto before moving back to Wingham.
The cemetery board decided to use funds from donations for the columbarium and Ball pointed to several other projects, some completed and some ongoing, that will help beautify the space and increase the usage of the cemetery in the coming years.
“We replaced the [northern] fence at the site in the past several years at a cost of $45,000,” he said. “That was paid for by donations.”
The original fence was cables with posts, however the board decided to put donations towards the fence.
After the fence was erected, Ball explained that plaques were made available to put on the fence in honour of individuals and in memory of family members at $625 per space.
“There were 65 sections, each with a space for a plaque,” he said. “We currently have 22 sections left.”
The board is also currently considering work on the hedge at the front of the cemetery on Base Line.
“We also have two acres at the back of the cemetery that have not been touched yet,” Ball said. “We may look at surveying them for future use.”
The cemetery is privately-run, but is open to the whole community, Ball explained. Originally, the cemetery was attached to a church that closed in 1904 and was then handed over to a board of trustees which has been managing it ever since.
The cemetery’s 91st memorial service and rededication will be held on July 2 this year.
For more information on the cemetery, contact Ball at 519-526-7514.