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From the organisers of

Memorial standard BS 8415 is available for comment

7 November 2017

You can comment on the proposed changes to BS 8415 online until 15 January. They include some significant changes to the fixing systems of headstones. You have to register to use the BSI site, which you can do at the web address below. Once you have registered you can view the standard and comment on it.

Proposals for the revision of BS 8415, the Standard for Memorials, are now open for public comment. Closing date for comments is 15 January.

Discussion to bring the proposed revisions to this stage have been fairly protracted due largely to differences of opinion about how to secure a headstone safely. But proposals have now been compiled and It is good to know a conclusion is on the way.

Now the draft is available, it is hoped masons and their product suppliers will take advantage of the opportunity to look carefully to see if any of the changes affect the way their work is currently carried out and comment on the proposals.

There are new drawings, including some by NAMM (the National Association of Memorial Masons) from its Code of Working Practice. Some of drawings from the previous version of the Standard remain, with some corrections to the wording.

Definitions have been updated and some of the sections have been moved around to try and make the standard flow better. Dowel sizes have been altered to reflect current usage.

Some sections have been removed while other pieces of information have been incorporated into the main text of the standard.

The annex dealing with the Risk Assessment of Memorials was scrutinised and has been changed to make inspections easier to carry out.  

Ground Anchor testing has drastically changed following much debate during the process of drawing up the revised draft of the Standard. The test for fixing systems proposed in the standard could be complex. Manufacturers and users of dowels and other fixing systems should study the requirements carefully and comment to BSI (British Standars Institution) if necessary.

David Francis, who sits on the British Standards Institution (BSI) committee responsible for the update of BS 8415 and writes the Grave Concerns column in Natural Stone Specialist magazine, says: "Please look at the standard now it is ready for public comment. You can send any questions to me ([email protected]) and I will try to answer them. Otherwise use the BSI website to make any comments and these will be reviewed in January."

The draft Standard can be viewed (but not downloaded because BSI likes to sell its standards) and commented on at You have to register to view the standard and submit your comments. It is not the most straightforward of processes to negotiate, but if you want to comment it should not take you too long to figure it out.

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