Standing water caused delays in maintaining the Woodlawn Cemetery

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The City of Fort St. John says heavy rain caused a delay in mowing the grass at the Fort St. John Woodlawn Cemetery before Fathers Day.

Over the weekend, photos shared on social media showed tall grass at the Cemetery with many commenters saying the City should have mowed the lawn before Fathers Day.

Fort St. John City Councillor Trevor Bolin said he visited the Cemetery on Sunday after seeing the social media posts. Councillor Bolin noted the areas that were not cut, were areas that were still wet after almost record rainfall earlier in the week.

Moira Green, the Manager of Community Services, said the area wasn’t mowed to prevent damage to the cemetery. “The areas that aren’t mowed have standing water. The reason we are not in there mowing is because if we damage those lots, and those sites of interment, then that is going to be a much bigger problem then some long grass.”

Watch the full discussion about this issue at the June 22, 2020 Council meeting.

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This year the City will be spending $1.25 on improvements at the site.

The improvements include the addition of 400 plots, green burial plots, a columbarium and a scattering garden.

Construction work is already underway to expand the Woodlawn Cemetery – City of Fort St. John.

City staff say that since the area is an open field, it will be hard to fix all the drainage issues.

Councillor Bolin suggested that the City may want to try and take a proactive approach and communicate with residents as to why there is a delay in maintaining the facility.

Comments on social media said the state of the City’s Cemetary was unacceptable and asked for several Fort St. John City councillors to get answers to what the City will do to fix it.

The City of Fort St. John has one employee dedicated to the maintenance of the Communities Cemeteries.

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