Cemetery extension for Slough Borough Council; 7,000 new burial and cremation plots

“We have been highly impressed with the range of resources and skillsets that White Horse Contractors have brought to the project and the project has run smoothly and on time, which in itself is impressive given the complexity of the development, the volume of soil to import and of course the great British weather.”

– Daryl Kelly, The CDS Group

White Horse Contractors constructed a cemetery extension, creating 7,000 new burial and cremation plots for Slough Borough Council, through the transformation of fields adjacent to the Stoke Road Cemetery and Crematorium.

Key Achievements

  • Constructed cemetery extension to The CDS Group’s design and detailed specification

  • Raised entire site level by 1.5-2.5m to overcome high water table

  • Importation of over 30,000m3 of soil, under CL: AIRE protocol

  • Comprehensive drainage installed to Environment Agency regulations

  • 1,000m retaining walls constructed

  • Traffic control scheme to minimise impact on local community

  • Leading with an empathetic approach whilst working alongside an existing cemetery, open to the general public

The Challenge

Slough Borough Council needed to increase burial and cremation plot capacity at the Stoke Road Cemetery and Crematorium. Leading consultants The CDS Group developed a design plan for the transformation of adjacent playing fields into 7,000 new burial and cremation plots.

Despite the ideal location of the adjacent land, a ground survey showed that the playing fields had a high groundwater table, rendering them unsuitable for burial plot construction without significant groundworks.

Together Slough Borough Council and The CDS Group ran a competitive tender process to find a contractor with the expertise, equipment, and experience to overcome the water table issue, install drainage in compliance with Environment Agency regulations, and carry out the cemetery extension works to The CDS Group’s designs.

The Solution

White Horse Contractors were awarded the cemetery extension contract by Slough Borough Council because of our proven experience, and record of success in cemetery constructions and extensions.

To mitigate the water table issues presented to us upon inspection, we worked with scheme designers The CDS Group to develop a plan to raise the entire site.
We successfully executed this plan by importing 33,000 m3 of soil, under CL: AIRE protocol, and constructing over 1,000m of retaining walls to lift the entire site up between 1.5-2.5m.

This unique approach of reconstructing the land meant that it would now be suitable for burial plot construction, with no risk of interaction with the water table.
White Horse installed a comprehensive drainage and stormwater attenuation system to specification. Following this, we constructed a new floodplain adjacent to the burial plots, ensuring the effective management of water across the cemetery extension.

Working to the CDS designs our team executed hard and soft landscaping. Including the planting of 7,500 trees, plants, and shrubs to realise the vision for a tranquil and peaceful environment.

During the works, our team identified an opportunity to utilise the site even further by adding burial plots that were not within the original specification. Working with The CDS Group and Slough Borough Council, our team maximised the western boundary of the site to increase capacity and value for the client.

We’re really pleased to have achieved what we wanted to achieve for this cemetery project.

When we first arrived on site it was a failing marshy field, to see this huge project site transform over time has been great.

Colin McBeth, Contracts Manager, White Horse Contractors


White Horse Contractors transformed unusable land into a large-scale cemetery extension for Slough Borough Council. With superb craftsmanship and soil and water engineering across the site, our team raised the entire site by at least 1.5m, installed a comprehensive drainage and stormwater attenuation system (including hydro-brakes and first defence chamber) to realise the design vision.

We identified the opportunity to create additional plots and maximise the potential of the available space for the council with expert skill. In total we delivered over 7,000 new burial and cremation plots, more than originally specified, to increase Slough Borough Council’s return on investment.

Thank you to CDS and Slough Borough Council for trusting us with this project, Colin and the team have worked to an exceptional standard again. For White Horse, this is another example of our capabilities when finding creative solutions to complex issues.

David Smith, Managing Director, White Horse Contractors

For more information call 01865 736272 or email whc@whitehorsecontractors.co.uk