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Interment industry in NSW

The interment industry is a phrase used to describe the providers of interment services, such as burials and cremations. In 2014-15 there were 851 operational cemeteries and 49 operating crematoria in NSW. These were managed by 234 registered operators.

The information below about the industry is sourced from the Cemeteries and Crematoria NSW Activity Report 2014-15.

Read our frequently asked questions to find answers to common questions about the industry.

About the industry

Cultural diversity creates differing needs

The rich diversity of our community means there are a wide range of needs and expectations for burial and cremation services. Information compiled by Multicultural NSW shows that NSW is home to:

  • 200+ languages
  • 125+ religions
  • 300 ancestries

What is the split between interment service types in NSW?

There are over 50,000 deaths a year in NSW with many more cremations than burials overall.

Graph showing split between cremations and burials

Who provides burial and cremation services?

Over 230 operators provide interment services across NSW.

Crown trusts

  • five large trusts in Sydney
  • five smaller trusts in regional NSW
  • Crown trusts conduct around 70 per cent of burials in Sydney

Local councils

  • manage around 950 cemeteries in NSW
  • 80 per cent of council-run cemeteries are closed or conduct 10 or fewer burials per year
  • manage 8 crematoria in NSW
  • conduct around 50 per cent of burials in NSW and only 10 per cent of burials in Sydney

Private operators

  • manage over 70 per cent of crematoria in NSW
  • manage around 2 per cent of cemeteries in NSW
  • conduct 75 per cent of cremations in NSW

Community operators

  • oversee small, closed cemeteries
  • local communities and religious entities manage around 10 per cent of operational cemeteries in NSW
  • conduct around one per cent of burials across NSW and no cremations

Where do service providers operate?

Graph showing where service providers operate

Number of cemeteries and crematoria in NSW

Graph showing number of services by region

Distribution of total burials and cremation services across NSW

Graph showing total services by region

Cremation rate by region

The cremation rate is calculated as the number of cremation services divided by the number of total cremation and burial services.

Graph showing cremation rate by region