A resting place for hundreds of Harvey residents is set to be expanded and a new advisory group is planned to be formed. Those are the key takeaways from the Shire of Harvey’s five year cemetery strategy, which is set to be implemented after the council voted unanimously to approve the strategy at the September 20 meeting. A report prepared as part of the strategy shows the Harvey Lawn Cemetery has only eight years of life remaining based on current average burial rates. In his report to councillors, infrastructure services director Rick Lotznicker noted burials at the Forestry Road site accounted for 76 per cent of all in the Shire. “As the Harvey Lawn Cemetery has recorded the highest average annual burial rate, plans need to be developed for a staged expansion of the burial area on land to the east towards Richardson Road,” he said. The much smaller Australind Cemetery has about 15 years of burial life yet, though that figure is based upon a significant portion of those burials being double interments. The presence of limestone at the site is the main reason for the short expected burial life. The Cookernup Cemetery is the least of concern for the council, with an expected burial life of 100 years at current levels. The council has more breathing space with ashes interment, with the Harvey Lawn Cemetery having enough space on current figures to last another six decades. The Old Harvey Cemetery is only used for those with existing burial rights as there is no capacity for new burial sites. As part of the strategy, there are expected to be improvements to all four cemeteries the council operates, improved mapping of cemetery sites as well as the establishment of a Cemetery Advisory Group. The group will comprise two councillors, relevant council staff and four community representatives. Two of the representatives will come from Harvey, with one each from Australind and Cookernup. Councillors Amanda Lovitt and Wendy Dickinson will be inaugural elected members on the group, which will meet at least twice a year. The council also voted to establish an Early Years Advisory Group and Wisdom Council as part of its meeting this month. The Shire of Harvey was contacted for comment.