Cemetery Sunday will be on Sunday, 29th May at 12.30pm in St Mary’s Cemetery, Newcastle and 3.00pm in St Patrick’s Cemetery, Bryansford. Bryansford is the largest and busiest Service with high levels of traffic congestion. Some of this has been uncontrolled and can no longer be permitted for vehicles to be parked on main routes in and around the vicinity of the Cemetery. We have sought advice and consultation with specialists including the PSNI to help with the issues. As a result, we are implementing the following additional measures and provisions:
Additional Field Car Parking
Additional ‘External’ parking being made available within a field located immediately in front of St Patrick’s Church. Access to this car park will be available in two ways:
1. Bryansford Road
o This is accessible on the LEFT-HAND SIDE coming from Newcastle and RIGHT-HAND SIDE coming from Bryansford. This is opposite our field, which was the field we previously used in 2019.
o We request that those coming from Newcastle via the Bryansford Road to enter the car park via this point.
o Equally, when going home, you will be requested to only go right and back towards Newcastle. However, you may also be permitted to go back towards Castlewellan, etc. but only on strict Stewards instructions.
2. Hilltown Road
o This is accessible on the RIGHT-HAND SIDE coming from the Hilltown direction (OPPOSITE WALSH’s CARAVAN PARK) and LEFT-HAND SIDE coming past St Patrick’s Church.
o We request those coming from Bryansford Village, Kilcoo and Hilltown, etc to enter the car park via this point.
o Equally, when going home, you will be mainly requested to go back towards Bryansford Village, Kilcoo and Hilltown. However, you may also be permitted to go back towards Newcastle and Castlewellan, but only on strict Stewards instructions.
· Appropriate access and egress will be provided for vehicles at all times and be open for use from 12.30pm. These access and egress points will be appropriately signed and stewarded.
· After parking your vehicle, pedestrians will be able to walk through the field, safely, off the road and enter back onto the Bryansford Road at the top, beside the junction with the Ballyhafry Road and Hilltown Road. Pedestrians will then be directed across the road towards the Church & Cemetery grounds via existing routes.
Tickets – Church and Cemetery Car Park (ONLY)
· Parking within the Church and Cemetery grounds will be only exclusively for disabled, elderly and ambulantly disabled people. It’s also available for drivers responsible for driving anyone with any of these debilities. Restrictions will also be in place within the Cemetery grounds as we can no longer permit vehicles to park on the rear grassed areas of the Cemetery as this is sacred ground.
· Tickets are allocated on a ‘first come – first served’ basis. Tickets are only for the Church and Cemetery grounds – not the external field car park.
· By telephone on 028 437 22401 or by calling into the office. The office opening times are Tuesday-Friday 10.00am to 1:00pm.
· Stewards will be present to direct and assist the safe operations and migration of vehicles and pedestrians. PSNI officers will also assist with the traffic operations. Signage will also be in place.
· NB: PSNI Traffic Branch have asked us to warn parishioners that they will have no hesitation in booking cars that are not properly parked!
· We request everyone arrive early and orderly and be in place no later than 2.30pm, otherwise we will have to reallocate your parking space. Stewards must be afforded appropriate time to allocate and manage parking spaces to ensure the Service starts on time.
· These new measures must be strictly adhered to! Therefore, I request that you follow the advice and guidance of the stewards at all times. They are there to help you! Egress and exiting will be equally coordinated in a safe and structured manner.
Cemetery Car Park Closure
· The Cemetery Car Park will be closed to non-ticket holders at 12:00pm.
· We understand that you will want to visit and tend to your family graves, but we would ask for your understanding to give stewards time to prepare for the Service at 3:00pm.
· St Patrick’s Hall will be opened from midday & throughout the Service for toilets and fresh water.
· Thank you for your patience and understanding.
‘Bottles of Holy water sponsored by the Knights of St. Columbanus will be available for collection on entry to the Cemeteries’.