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Class B Cemetery Trusts - Records required as State Archives

This topic page is provided to Class B Cemetery Trusts to assist Trustees to identify records that must be transferred to Public Record Office Victoria for retention as State Archives. These records are of permanent value to the cemetery industry, the community and the State of Victoria.

Class A Cemetery Trusts must comply with the requirements set by PROS 15/01 Retention and Disposal Authority for Cemetery and Crematoria Records.



Certain records of your Cemetery Trust must be transferred to Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) for retention as State Archives once they are no longer required by your Cemetery Trust to manage the cemetery.

Permanent records must not be destroyed.

For information about transfer of permanent records to PROV, please see Transferring records to PROV.

The list below is not finite but provides examples of records that may be created and maintained by your Cemetery Trust which must be transferred to PROV for retention as State Archives. These records are provided as examples only and may not be created by all Cemeteries.


1. Governance records

Cemetery Trust Meetings
Master set of agendas, minutes and papers for Trust meetings and Committees required under the Cemeteries and Crematoria Act.

Policies and procedures
Master set of all policies and procedures of the Trust which are not documented in the Minutes.


2. Cemetery structure records 

Final “As Built” design documentation for Cemetery Structures for the disposing or interring of remains (drawings, plans, and specifications).

Honouring and Naming
Requests and approvals to use the name of persons of public significance and interest (e.g. saints, parliamentarians, academics, philanthropists etc.).

Decommissioning or removal of structures  
Revocation of approvals and records of liaison with Holders of Right (if applicable).


3. Disposal of remains records 

Details of Deceased and Burial Locations
Records of deceased and interment: burial registers, location registers, receipt books, deed stubs, authorisations to dispose of remains (i.e. inter or cremate), personal details of deceased as required by the Cemeteries and Crematoria Act, type of disposal, date of disposal, location and depth of remains, interment position, return depth, exhumation details if applicable.

Rights of Interment (ROI)
Records of Right of Interment: personal details of Holder of Right (HoR), applications, transfer of HoR, Statutory Declarations declaring ROI ownership, cancellations, relinquishments, disputes, cancelled deeds, pre‐paid financial details.


4. Land management records 

Plans and drawings of cemetery and crematoria lands
Master set of cemetery maps, grave location maps, horticultural species maps, aerial site photographs.

Reclaiming unexercised Rights of Interment (ROIs)
Final investigation reports, successful applications and Ministerial approvals for reclaiming unexercised ROIs.

Reservation of land for faith, religious or cultural groups
Final agreement between the cemetery and faith, religious or cultural group and distribution map marking out the land to be allocated to that particular group.

Overlay registers and approvals
Final approvals and permits from the relevant regulatory body to alter or remove areas or objects that are covered by overlays.


5. Inventory management records 

Construction of inventory – crypts, vaults, grave foundations etc.
Final agreements, approved plans, drawings and specifications and ‘as‐built’ documentation.

Dis‐establishment of inventory – crypts, vaults, grave foundations etc.
Final proposals and approvals to dis‐establish or rejuvenate existing inventory; liaison with Holders of Right (if applicable); and Holder of Right instructions regarding the inventory.


6. Memorialisation records 

Memorial details
Approvals, installation date, changes or replacements, and Hold of Right instructions.

Removal of memorials
Investigation reports, liaison and notification to the Holder of Right, applications and approvals to remove memorials deemed to be unsafe in nature where no Holder of Right can be located or the Holder of Right is not willing to repair the memorials.

Species registers
Master Set of species registers of horticultural objects (such as trees, roses, shrubs etc.) and their locations.

Dis‐establishment of limited tenure memorials
Holder of Right investigation notes, advertisements to locate Holder(s) of Right, liaison with Holder of Right, Holder of Right instructions regarding the memorial(s).

Preservation of memorials
Proposals to repair or preserve memorials of public figures that have contributed to the Victoria; investigations and liaison with the Holder of Right; agreed and approved works; and Holder of Right instructions.


Further Resources

Advice on how to go about transferring records to PROV can be found on the PROV website - see Transferring records to PROV.



Material in the Public Record Office Victoria archival collection contains words and descriptions that reflect attitudes and government policies at different times which may be insensitive and upsetting

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples should be aware the collection and website may contain images, voices and names of deceased persons.

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