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Category Administration and Management
Type Policy
Approved by Vice-Chancellor, 17 April 2013
Date Policy Took Effect 30 April 2013
Last Approved Revision 31 July 2015
Sponsor Director, Property Services
Responsible Officer Manager, Strategy and Planning, Property Services
Review Date 31 July 2020


To manage:

  • the design and placement of memorial plaques;
  • the placement of dedicated trees; and
  • entries in the University of Otago Memorial and Commemorative Register.

Organisational Scope

All University of Otago owned and managed property located in Dunedin and elsewhere in relation to memorial services, the placement of physical memorials and the compilation of entries for the Memorial and Commemorative Register. It does not include memorials located off-campus.


A service, structure, tree or plaque that commemorates a person, group or an event.
Dedicated Tree
A tree (preferably native) for planting, in accordance with the University Landscape Development Plan, on the Dunedin campus.
University of Otago Memorial and Commemorative Register
An on-line (printable) compilation of epitaphs and information on the location of physical memorials to a person, group or event located on the University campus.


1. Memorial Services

  1. Memorial services, to commemorate the life of students and staff who have died while studying or working at the University, may be held on the University campus. Such services are to be conducted by the University Chaplains, local kaumatua or other persons approved by the Registrar or Director of Student Services.  In some cases, it may be appropriate to seek cultural advice.
  2. This extends to include former long-serving members of staff and to others closely connected to the University as approved by the Registrar.
  3. Requests for memorial services should be submitted to the Registrar or the Director, Student Services.
  4. No human remains (including ashes) are allowed on Campus as part of a memorial service or related event. For cultural reasons, the burial or scattering of ashes is also not allowed.
  5. Funeral services are not permitted on Campus.

2. Campus Memorial Garden

  1. A Campus Memorial Garden (location and design yet to be agreed) will be established as a dedicated location for the placement of plaques requested by families, heads of University departments, or others.
  2. The design, format and placement of plaques will be managed by the Director, Property Services. Plaques will not include photographs.
  3. Only one plaque per individual will be permitted and the cost of the plaque will be borne by the requester.
  4. All requests for placement of a plaque in the memorial garden should be submitted to Property Services and will be subject to the approval of the Registrar or the Director, Student Services.

3. Dedicated Trees

  1. The planting of a dedicated tree is restricted to planting on the banks of the Water of Leith.
  2. The following conditions apply:
    1. Requests for dedicated trees should be submitted to Property Services and will be subject to the approval of the Registrar or the Director, Student Services.
    2. Dedicated trees must be selected from an approved species list provided by Property Services.
    3. The location of a dedicated tree will be included in the Memorial and Commemorative Register. However no plaque will be placed on site.
    4. The cost of the tree will be borne by the requester.

4. Memorial and Commemorative Register

  1. Entries for the Register should be submitted to Property Services and will be subject to the approval of the Registrar or the Director, Student Services.
  2. The word limit shall be approximately150 words.
  3. Submissions may be edited for format, length, duplication of information and typographical errors before inclusion in the Register.
  4. The Director of Property Services shall ensure that the on-line memorial and commemorative register is regularly updated so that it remains current.

5. Other Memorials

  1. Requests for memorials other than as described in Clauses 1 to 4 above will be considered on a case by case basis by the Vice-Chancellor.

6. Existing Memorials

  1. All existing memorials on campus (as at 1 January 2013) shall remain in situ or, with appropriate consultation, be accommodated or relocated in any redevelopment or landscaping of the campus.

Related Policies, Procedures and Forms

Contact for Further Information

If you have any queries regarding the content of this Policy or need further clarification, contact Resource Planner/Policy Adviser, Murray Brass on 03 479 8024 or