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PR launch for Wiesenhof Legacy Parks

Legacy Parks, South Africa’s first privately-owned and operated eco-friendly cemetery, has appointed marcusbrewster as its PR agency of record.  

 marcusbrewster’s Cape Town office is handling communication and PR strategy around the introduction of the natural burials concept as well as  media liaison, reputation management and publicity duties for the company.   The first site, Wiesenhof Legacy Park, launched in August  in a conservation area outside Stellenbosch.

Legacy Parks is a more natural alternative to traditional cemeteries, burials or cremation and a safer, more tranquil place for family members to remember their loved ones in an environment where preserving legacy is a central concept,” says Legacy Parks CEO Willie Fouche.

“People now have the option of leaving this world in an Earth-friendly way.”

The beautiful Wiesenhof site, outside Stellenbosch, became South Africa’s first privately-owned nature reserve in 1968, and attracted more than 20 000 visitors each year in the 1970s. Now, while still remaining a nature reserve, the land will be developed in phases, offering grave sites and memorialisation areas for the scattering of ashes with seeds to create fields of flowers or tree planting. Plant life and existing indigenous trees create a natural habitat for wildlife, including zebra and springbok, to flourish, making Wiesenhof Legacy Parks unique in the world of eco-cemeteries.

Bodies will be returned to the earth in the least artificial way – caskets are made from biodegradable materials such as wicker, and burial sites will be marked organically with engraved stone markers or a tree planted by relatives.

Care has been taken to ensure that interment at a Legacy Parks site is appropriate for people of all faiths and cultures, says Fouche: “People of all religions may be buried at Legacy Parks.”

Only 10 hectares of the  300-hectare site will be used for burial purposes and a full-time maintenance team, led by a horticulturalist, is responsible for the upkeep of the site.

“While traditional cemeteries have up to 80% of a site covered with graves, our difference is conservation,” Fouche says.

On-site facilities include a coffee shop and a deck across a picturesque dam, where commemoration services can be held.

 The Wiesenhof Legacy Park site is just the beginning, and plans are advanced to introduce further sites around the country, says National Sales and Marketing Manager Piet Joubert: “Legacy Parks has secured several privately-owned sites across the country including Pretoria and Port Elizabeth, and intends to develop further eco-cemeteries from 2012.”

“South Africans often view death in a negative light and decisions regarding mortality are put on hold until the need arises. Legacy Parks aims to change this by bringing real dignity and ongoing memorialisation to those we hold dearest,” says Joubert.

Eco-cemeteries are a more environmentally friendly option for final resting places and an international trend, with new sites gaining traction across the USA, UK, Australia and Canada each month.

For more information, please visit http://legacyparks.co.za.



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