Headstone purchase guide

We have taken time to list all the things you need to consider when purchasing a  memorial headstone for a loved one and aim to give you the benefit of our experience.

Size of Headstone – Based on a ‘typical’ inscription you would expect:

  • 2 inscriptions from a 2’6 high memorial
  • 3 inscriptions from a 2’10 / 3’ memorial
  • 4 inscriptions from a 3’6 memorial

This is just a rough guide but if you are not sure then we are more than happy to provide a scale drawing for you. The shape of a headstone can affect how many letters you can fit on it. Please also note that if the headstone you require is wider then we may need to check with the local authority to see if it will fit.


Please take a look at our colour samples online or alternatively we can send you some on request.

Combination of stone and lettering colour

The best advice we can give is to choose a combination which will contrast each other such as black with silver or light grey with black.

Here is a list of combinations which we know will work.

  • Black/black galaxy – Gold, Silver, White, Blue, Pink
  • Blue lagoon / butterfly blue – Gold, Silver, White, Pink
  • Light grey – Black only
  • Green / Ruby red / balmoral red – Gold, Silver
  • Blue pearl – White, Gold

Wording of inscription

Our best advice we can give here is if you are not sure whether to add a particular word or line onto a stone then leave it out. Once it is carved into the stone then it is very costly to remove.

Take a moment to look at the inscriptions section of the website which will help with the wording and layout.

When lettering a memorial be sure to let us know what space is to be left as this can dramatically affect the overall look of the memorial.

Design / motif

We have a large selection of designs to choose from but if you fancy something different then do not hesitate to ask. Some designs work better on some granite’s than others. The basic rule is that the more speckled or grained the granite is the bolder the design should be.

We recommend designs that are ‘carved’ into the stone as apposed to ‘etched’

A carved design will be more noticeable and stand the test of time better. An etched design only takes a light skim off the polish so lacks the depth for a clear motif in our opinion.

Price and cost of the memorial – what’s included and what’s extra.

At Whiteside Memorials our aim is to keep things simple when purchasing a headstone.

Included in the price is: All lettering, 1 standard motif from our range, flower vase/s, erecting of memorial, VAT, scale drawing of headstone and 10 year guarantee.

Please note that the council foundation permit fee is charged at cost price. As the price is dependant on the location, size of headstone and type of lair we will contact you later with the cost of this.

Price for foundation/ permit can range from zero up to £500+ so it is advisable to either contact you local council or call us for more info.

Optional extras

As well as the memorial itself you can also add some little extras such as:

  • Ceramic photographs
  • One off designs
  • Insurance
  • Statues
  • Extra vases

Please take a look at our ceramic photo size guide………( size guide to follow )

The average ceramic photo size we do is an 8x10cm size

Insurance is provided by Stoneguard and starts from only £28 for 5 years.

Order process

  •  Browse the website making sure to read all the info in our purchase guide.
  • Choose shape, colour and size of headstone.
  • Add any extras such as vases, ceramic photos & statues.
  • Receive price (minus permit fee) and pay 30% deposit to confirm.
  • We will email you with confirmation of order complete with:
    Invoice, receipt, estimated delivery time, scale drawing, permit info and cost.
  • At this point you must check order, sign and return it along with:
    Title deeds (if required) signed permit form (if required) and payment of permit fee.
  • Once we have received all paperwork we will start manufacturing process.
  • Once headstone has been lettered and painted we will email you a photo
    of headstone for you to check before it is erected.
  • Please check you are happy with headstone and all dates and wording are correct.
  • Remainder of balance 70% is now payable.
  • Once payment has been received we will erect headstone at earliest opportunity.
  • Once the headstone is erected we will email or call you with confirmation
  • Any title deeds or photographs will be returned by recorded delivery
    along with your guarantee certificate.