Author Topic: A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA  (Read 123809 times)

Offline Valda

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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #27 on: Saturday 18 June 11 18:43 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA





CIVIC CEMETERIES




CEMETERIES IN THE FIVE LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC ESSEX UNTIL 1965




REDBRIDGE
The WESTERLEIGH GROUP manage the council's cemeteries.

Barkingside Cemetery, Longwood Gardens, Barkingside IG5 (1923) Garden of Rest (1954)

Buckingham Road Cemetery (formerly Great Ilford Cemetery), Buckingham Road, Ilford IG1 (1881)

Roding Lane Cemetery, Roding Lane North, South Woodford, IG8 (1940)



INDEPENDENTLY MANAGED CEMETERIES WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF REDBRIDGE

Forest Park Cemetery & Crematorium Ltd Forest Road, Hainault IG6 (2005)
WESTERLEIGH GROUP

Gardens of Peace Muslim Cemetery, Elmbridge Road, Hainault IG6 (2002) present owners GARDENS OF PEACE MUSLIM CEMETERY TRUST





WALTHAM FOREST

Chingford Mount Cemetery, 121 Old Church Road, E4 (1884)
Registers 1884-1952 at WALTHAM FOREST ARCHIVES post 1953 are at the cemetery. 
Waltham Forest Family History Society has a MONUMENTAL INSCRIPTION project on going for this cemetery

Walthamstow Cemetery, Queen's Road, E17 (1872)
Registers are held at Chingford Mount cemetery
Waltham Forest Family History Society has a MONUMENTAL INSCRIPTION project on going for this cemetery
 


INDEPENDENTLY MANAGED CEMETERY WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF WALTHAM FOREST

St Patrick's Roman Catholic Leytonstone Cemetery, Langthorne Road, Leytonstone E11 4HL (1861)
Registers are at the cemetery with copies held by the CATHOLIC FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETY and the CATHOLIC NATIONAL LIBRARY (including MIs)
The East of London Family History Society has produced a CEMETERY BURIAL INDEX 1861-1880 on CD
 



Further information on ESSEX burials can be found in the Rootschat guide on the relevant county board.
 






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Offline Valda

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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #28 on: Saturday 18 June 11 19:02 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA






CIVIC CEMETERIES

Land for burials is always at a premium in London so cemeteries managed by London boroughs may not always be within their own areas.



CEMETERIES IN THE FOUR LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC KENT




BEXLEY

Bexleyheath Cemetery, Banks Lane, Broadway, Bexleyheath DA6 (1879)
Burial Registers & indexes 1879-1943 on CD are published by NORTHWEST KENT FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETY

Erith Cemetery (formerly Brook Street Cemetery) Brook Street, Erith DA8 (1894)
Burial Registers 1894-1962 on CD are published by Northwest Kent Family History Society

Hillview Cemetery, Wickham Street, Welling DA16 (1995)

Sidcup Cemetery, Foots Cray Lane, Sidcup DA14 (1912)
Burial Registers 1912-1962 on CD are published by Northwest Kent Family History Society

BEXLEY LOCAL STUDIES AND ARCHIVE CENTRE hold burial registers for Bexleyheath Cemetery 1879—1943 and index to burials 1879-1943, Erith Cemetery 1894-1962 and Sidcup Cemetery 1912-1962 and notices of internment 1960-1963.


See the London borough of Greenwich for information on the jointly managed Eltham Crematorium also known as, Falconwood, Crown Woods Way, Eltham SE9





BROMLEY

Biggin Hill Cemetery, Kingsmead Road, Biggin Hill TN16 (1930)

Bromley Hill Cemetery, Bromley Hill, Bromley BR1 (1907)

Chislehurst Cemetery, Beaverwood Road, Chislehurst BR7 (1912)
BROMLEY ARCHIVES hold Chislehurst Cemetery Interments 1961-1963 and Memorials 1960-1964.

London Road Cemetery, Warner Road, Bromley BR1 (1877)

Plaistow Cemetery, Burnt Ash Lane, Bromley BR1 (1892)

St Luke's Cemetery, Magpie Hall Lane, Bromley Common BR2 (1894)

St Mary Cray Cemetery, Star Lane, Orpington BR5 (1881)


 
INDEPENDENTLY MANAGED CEMETERY AND CREMATORIUM WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF BROMLEY

Beckenham Cemetery and Crematorium (formerly Crystal Palace Cemetery also known as Elmer’s End Cemetery and Crematorium), Elmers End Road, Beckenham BR3 (1876 - crematorium 1956)
Present owners DIGNITY
 






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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #29 on: Saturday 18 June 11 19:16 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA






CEMETERIES IN THE FOUR LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC KENT




GREENWICH 

Charlton Cemetery, Cemetery Lane, Charlton SE7 (1864)

Eltham Cemetery and Crematorium, Crown Woods Way, Eltham SE9 (1935 crematorium - 1956)

Eltham Crematorium or Falconwood is jointly managed by the London Borough of Bexley and the Kent Borough of Dartford. Greenwich is responsible for the main administration.

Greenwich Cemetery, (Shooter’s Hill) Well Hall Road, Eltham SE9 (1856)

Plumstead Cemetery, Cemetery Road, (off Wickham Lane) SE2 (1890)

Woolwich Cemetery (Old), Kings Highway SE18 (1856)

Woolwich Cemetery (New), Camdale Road SE18 (1885)


DECEASED ONLINE is a pay as you view indexed database of burials and cremations which the London borough of Greenwich has contributed records. COVERAGE of Greenwich cemetery registers and COVERAGE of Eltham Crematorium registers.




ARMED FORCES CEMETERY WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF GREENWICH

Royal Hospital Cemetery (Navy), Chevening Road, East Greenwich, SE10 (1705)
Surviving burial registers are held by THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (series ADM73) 
DECEASED ONLINE is a pay as you view indexed database of burials and cremations which The National Archives has contributed cemetery records. COVERAGE of The Royal Hospital Cemetery registers.

Royal Garrison Church of St George (Army), Grand Depot Road, Woolwich SE18
Building began in 1863 to serve the Woolwich Garrison. It was hit by a V2 rocket in 1944.
Surviving burial registers are held by THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES (series WO156)
DECEASED ONLINE is a pay as you view indexed database of burials and cremations which The National Archives has contributed burial records. COVERAGE of The Royal Garrison Church burial registers.
 



LEWISHAM

Brockley Cemetery, (formerly Deptford Cemetery) Brockley Road SE4 (1858)

Grove Park Cemetery, Marvels Road, SE12 (1935)

Hither Green Cemetery (formerly Lee Cemetery) and Lewisham Crematorium, Verdant Lane SE6 (1873 crematorium - 1956)

Ladywell Cemetery (formerly Lewisham Cemetery), Ladywell Road SE13 (1858)
An ONLINE transcription of memorial inscriptions (incomplete) of Brockley and Ladywell cemeteries by Northwest Family History Society
FRIENDS OF BROCKLEY AND LADYWELL CEMETERIES





LONDON ASYLUMS AND HOSPITAL CEMETERIES IN THE BOROUGH OF DARTFORD IN THE COUNTY OF KENT


DARTFORD BOROUGH COUNCIL

The Joyce Green Hospital Cemetery, Cornwall Road? Dartford, Kent, DA1 1902-1951
The cemetery served The Metropolitan Asylums Board (later London County Council) fever and small pox hospitals of Gore Farm, Joyce Green, Long Reach and The Orchard which replaced the hospital ships moored at Long Reach Dartford from 1883. The LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES hold the registers.

Southern Rest Cemetery 1878-1918, replaced by Darenth Rest Cemetery, Chapel Path?, Darenth, Kent  DA2 1918-1995
The cemeteries of Darenth Park Hospital initially a Metropolitan Asylum Board later a London County Council institution for children with learning disabilities (formerly Darenth Asylum and Schools 1878-1913, Darenth Industrial Colony and Darenth Training Colony 1920-1937). The asylum contained adult patients.
The cemetery received burials from the isolation hospital ships moored at Dartford. A photocopy of the lost earlier adult register is held at the LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES 


Stone House Asylum Cemetery, Cotton Lane, Stone, Kent, DA2 1921-1968
The City of London mental asylum. The LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES hold surviving burial registers.


 


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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #30 on: Saturday 18 June 11 19:37 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA






CIVIC CEMETERIES

Land for burials is always at a premium in London so cemeteries managed by London boroughs may not always be within their own areas.



CEMETERIES IN THE EIGHT LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC SURREY




CROYDON

Bandon Hill Joint Cemetery, Plough Lane, Wallington SM6 (1900) is jointly managed with the London borough of Sutton and is situated in Sutton.

Croydon Cemetery and Crematorium, Mitcham Road, Croydon CR9 (1897 crematorium - 1937)
Croydon Crematorium on line BOOK OF REMEMBRANCE

Greenlawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Chelsham Road, Warlingham CR6 (1938)

Queens Road Cemetery, Queen’s Road, Croydon CR0 (1861)
Copies of the burial registers 1861-1871 are held at CROYDON LOCAL STUDIES AND ARCHIVES 
West Surrey Family History Society has produced a BURIAL INDEX on CD which has coverage of Queens Road Cemetery between the years 1861-1865
 



ASYLUM CEMETERIES WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF CROYDON

Cane Hill Hospital, Portnalls Road, Coulsdon, Croydon CR5 1884-1950
This was first a Surrey and then later a London county mental asylum. Burial registers are held at CROYDON LOCAL STUDIES AND ARCHIVES    

Netherne Hospital, Woodplace Lane, Hooley, Coulsdon, Croydon CR5 1909-1960
This was a Surrey county mental asylum. Burial registers are held at SURREY HISTORY CENTRE





KINGSTON-UPON-THAMES

Kingston Cemetery, Bonner Hill Road, Kingston-upon-Thames KT1 (1855 crematorium - 1952)
Online DATABASE for Kingston Cemetery 1855-1911 at Kingston Life Cycles
Kingston Crematorium online BOOK OF REMEMBRANCE password rbk

Surbiton Cemetery, Lower Marsh Lane, Kingston-upon-Thames KT1 (1915)

Online DATABASE for all Kingston-upon-Thames cemetery records





LAMBETH

Lambeth Cemetery, Blackshaw Road, SW17 (1854 crematorium - 1958)

Streatham Cemetery, Garratt Lane, SW17 (1893)

West Norwood Cemetery (South Metropolitan), Norwood Road, SE27 (1837 crematorium - 1915)
A cemetery DATABASE holding details of all reused graves in West Norwood Cemetery (therefore by no means a complete database of burials in the cemetery)
Bishop Transcripts for West Norwood Cemetery (Anglican burials only) 1838-1918 held at the LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES and also at ANCESTRY
FRIENDS OF WEST NORWOOD CEMETERY
West Norwood is one of London’s ‘Magnificent Seven’ cemeteries established between 1832 and 1841.This is an informal term given to these cemeteries in 1981 by an architectural historian.

LAMBETH ARCHIVES hold burial registers (on microfilm) for Lambeth Cemetery 1854-1978, Streatham Cemetery 1893-1955 and an index to burials at Streatham 1955-1981, West Norwood Cemetery 1837-1987, a common graves register 1838-1968 and an index to burials 1955-1981. The archives also hold a cremation register for West Norwood Crematorium 1893-1955 with an index and registers 1915-1984. They also hold a burial register for Greek burials at West Norwood Cemetery 1845-1962




INDEPENDENTLY MANAGED CEMETERY AND CREMATORIUM WITHIN THE LONDON BOROUGH OF LAMBETH

Streatham Park Cemetery and South London Crematorium, Rowan Road, Streatham SW16 (1908 crematorium - 1936)
Present owners DIGNITY
 







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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #31 on: Saturday 18 June 11 19:49 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA





CIVIC CEMETERIES


CEMETERIES IN THE EIGHT LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC SURREY





MERTON

Church Road Cemetery (St Peter’s and St Paul’s), Church Road, Mitcham CR4 (1883)

London Road Cemetery (Figge’s Marsh), London Road, Mitcham CR4 (1929)

Merton and Sutton Joint Cemetery (Garth Road), Garth Road, Morden SM4 (1947) jointly managed with the London borough of Sutton
Gap Road Cemetery (Wimbledon), Gap Road, SW19 (1876)

DECEASED ONLINE is a pay as you view indexed database of burials and cremations to which the London Borough of Merton has contributed cemetery records. COVERAGE of Merton cemetery registers so far

North East Surrey Crematorium, Lower Morden Lane, Morden SM4 (1958)
This CREMATORIUM is jointly managed by the London boroughs of Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth.




CEMETERY MANAGED BY ANOTHER LONDON BOROUGH WITHIN THE BOROUGH OF MERTON

See the London borough of Wandsworth for Battersea New Cemetery, (Morden) Lower Morden Lane, SM4 (1892) which is managed by Wandsworth.





RICHMOND UPON THAMES

Barnes Cemetery, Rocks Lane, Barnes Common, SW13 (1855)

East Sheen Cemetery, Sheen Road, Richmond-upon-Thames TW10 (1905)

Hampton Cemetery, Holly Bush Lane, Hampton TW12 (1879)

Old Mortlake Burial Ground, Avenue Gardens, SW14 (1887)

Richmond Cemetery, Grove Road, Richmond-upon-Thames TW10 (1839)

Teddington Cemetery, Shacklegate Lane, Teddington TW11 (1879)

Twickenham Cemetery, Hospital Bridge Road, Whitton TW2 (1868)

DATABASE for all Richmond-upon-Thames cemetery records


Richmond-upon-Thames with other London boroughs is a member of two crematorium boards

MORTLAKE CREMATORIUM BOARD
Mortlake Crematorium, Kew Meadow Path, Townmead Road, Richmond-upon-Thames TW9 (1939)
The Crematorium is jointly managed with the London boroughs of Ealing, Hammersmith and Fulham and Hounslow.

See the London borough of Hounslow for information on the jointly managed (with the London boroughs of Ealing, Hillingdon, Hounslow and the Surrey borough of Spelthorne), the South West Middlesex Crematorium (Hanworth Crematorium), Hounslow Road, Hanworth, Feltham TW13 (1954)




CEMETERIES MANAGED BY OTHER LONDON BOROUGHS WITHIN THE BOROUGH OF RICHMOND-UPON-THAMES

See the London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham for two cemeteries. Mortlake Cemetery (Hammersmith New), Clifford Avenue, SW14 (1926) and North Sheen Cemetery (Fulham New), Lower Richmond Road, TW9 (1909)

See the London Borough of Hounslow for Borough Cemetery, Powder Mill Lane, Whitton TW2 (1942)



INDEPENDENTLY MANAGED CEMETERY WITHIN THE BOROUGH OF RICHMOND-UPON-THAMES

Mortlake Roman Catholic Cemetery, North Worple Way SW14 (1852) is actually the churchyard of ST MARY MAGDALEN ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH






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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #32 on: Saturday 18 June 11 20:05 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA




CIVIC CEMETERIES


CEMETERIES IN THE EIGHT LONDON BOROUGHS FORMERLY PART OF HISTORIC SURREY




SOUTHWARK

Camberwell Old Cemetery, Underhill Road, SE22 (1856)
 
Camberwell New Cemetery, Brenchley Gardens, SE23 (1927)

Honor Oak Crematorium, Brockley Way, SE23 (1939)

Nunhead Cemetery (All Saints), Linden Grove, SE15 (1840)
Bishop Transcripts for Nunhead cemetery (Anglican burials only) 1842-1871 held at the LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES and also at ANCESTRY
SOUTHWARK LOCAL HISTORY LIBRARY hold microfiche indexes of burials at Nunhead Cemetery 1840 to 1996 and indexes of grave purchases 1895-1912.
FRIENDS OF NUNHEAD CEMETERY Nunhead is one of London’s ‘Magnificent Seven’ cemeteries established between 1832 and 1841.This is an informal term given to these cemeteries in 1981 by an architectural historian.






SUTTON

Bandon Hill Joint Cemetery, Plough Lane, Wallington SM6 (1900) is jointly managed with the London borough of Croydon

Cuddington Cemetery, Lindsay Road, Worcester Park KT4 (1902)

Merton and Sutton Joint Cemetery (Garth Road), Garth Road, Morden SM4 (1947) is jointly managed with the London borough of Merton and is situated in Merton.

Sutton Cemetery, Alcorn Close, off Oldfields Road, Sutton SM3 (1889)


See the London borough of Merton for information on the jointly managed North East Surrey Crematorium, Lower Morden Lane, Morden SM4 (1958)






WANDSWORTH

Battersea New Cemetery, (Morden) Lower Morden Lane, SM4 (1892) situated in Merton

Putney Vale Cemetery, Stag Lane, SW15 (1891 crematorium - 1938)

Putney Lower Common Cemetery, Lower Common, Lower Richmond Road SW15 (1855)

St Mary’s Cemetery, Battersea Rise, SW11, (1860)

Wandsworth Cemetery, Magdalen Road, SW18 (1878)

WANDSWORTH HERITAGE SERVICE also hold copies of burial registers for Battersea New Cemetery 1892-1930, Putney Vale Cemetery 1891-1930, Putney Lower Common Cemetery 1855-1982, St Mary’s Cemetery 1860-3 and 1875-81 plus a transcription of monumental inscriptions and Wandsworth Cemetery 1878-1930


See the London borough of Merton for information on the jointly managed North East Surrey Crematorium, Lower Morden Lane, Morden SM4 (1958)






LONDON ASYLUM CEMETERIES IN BOROUGHS AND DISTRICT COUNCILS IN THE COUNTY OF SURREY



SURREY BOROUGH OF EPSOM AND EWELL

Horton Cemetery, Horton Lane, Epsom KT18 (1901)
The cemetery of the five London County Council mental asylums situated in Epsom
(Horton, Long Grove, Manor, St Ebbe’s and West Park)
Registers are held at SURREY HISTORY CENTRE
DATABASE for Horton Cemetery records 1902-1955 at Epsom and Ewell History Explorer


SURREY BOROUGH OF REIGATE AND BANSTEAD

Banstead Asylum, Sutton Lane? Banstead, Surrey SM7 1877-1955
This was a Middlesex later a London county mental asylum. Burial registers are held at the LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES


SURREY DISTRICT COUNCIL OF TANDRIDGE

St Lawrence’s Hospital Cemetery, Coulsdon Road, Caterham, Surrey CR3 1870-1994
This cemetery served the Metropolitan Asylum Board (later London County Council)’s institution known as the Imbeciles Asylum, then Caterham Mental Hospital from 1920-1941 and finally St Lawrence’s Hospital until 1991. Registers held at LONDON METROPOLITAN ARCHIVES





Further information on SURREY burials can be found in the Rootschat guide on the relevant county board.









 
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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #33 on: Saturday 18 June 11 20:09 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA





WHO MIGHT BE MISSING FROM CHURCH OF ENGLAND BURIAL REGISTERS?




UNINTENTIONALLY MISSING


In 1538, a law was passed in England, which required the clergy to keep a record of baptisms, marriages, and burials, which would be recorded every Sunday after services. A further notice was sent out to churches in 1558, but compliance was still not uniform. In 1597 it was required that any existing records should be copied into a book (the parish register). There was some opposition from parish clergy. Some copied what records the parish had amassed into the new register, some copied some of the records and some did nothing starting their parish register from 1598. Not all parish registers survive from this period and because records were rarely written up on the day they occurred, not all events were remembered and written into the registers, particularly in smaller parishes lacking a resident minister.

In 1598, parishes were ordered to make annual returns of their baptisms, marriages, and burials to their local bishop. These are known as Bishops Transcripts and where obligatory up until the mid-nineteenth century. Not all parishes complied with the requirement on a regular basis and not all the transcripts have survived. Where they have, they serve as a useful check against the actual registers themselves. Not all entries in the parish registers are found in the Bishops Transcripts and sometimes records in the BTs are not found in the parish registers.


The English civil war lasted from1641-1651. The country was without a monarchy until the restoration of Charles II in 1660. Parish registers may only be fragmentary throughout this twenty-year period.



Institutions such as workhouses, asylums, and military hospitals often had their own burial grounds, particularly in the nineteenth century. With the building of municipal cemeteries from the 1840s onwards in towns and cities and the growing popularity of cremation, particularly from the twentieth century onwards, most burials and cremations in this country no longer occurred in churchyards, apart from in the more rural areas of England. Memorial services, in more modern times, might be listed in parish church registers if they are held in a church prior to a burial in a municipal cemetery. Such entries usually but not always give the actual burial location. A cremation would rarely be noted in a church burial register unless the ashes were buried in the churchyard later and then an entry should be made in the register.




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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #34 on: Saturday 18 June 11 20:11 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA





WHO MIGHT BE MISSING FROM CHURCH OF ENGLAND BURIAL REGISTERS?



INTENTIONALLY MISSING


The Church forbade the ceremonial interment of all excommunicated or unbaptized persons as well as suicides, though it was more sympathetic towards those suicides considered ‘bereft of reason’. Non-conformists were entitled to burial in the parish churchyard. The insertion of all such burials in the registers was often only fitful and irregular, though such burials did occur nevertheless.



UNBAPTISED


Unbaptised and stillborn babies can be found intermittently in even the earliest Church of England registers showing they were buried in churchyards, but more likely at the edges and in unconsecrated ground because they were not entitled to the full church rites of burial. Many of these burials went unrecorded in registers.

For parents who have experienced stillbirths this remains quite rightly a very sensitive subject, since attitudes to stillbirths were slow to change until well into the second half of the twentieth century ANSWERS.COM



NON-CONFORMISTS


By 1851, about a quarter of the population was non-conformist. Non-conformists were dissenters who disagreed with the beliefs and practices of the Church of England. They might be Protestants e.g. Presbyterians, Baptists, Methodists, Independents, Congregationalists and Quakers or Roman Catholics. Some non-conformist chapels had their own burial grounds, but burials for many non-conformists still took place in parish churchyards, until the larger towns and cities had established their own municipal cemeteries from the 1840s onwards. In 1880, the Burial Laws Amendment Act allowed for the burial of non-conformists by their own ministers in Anglican churchyards. Where burials did take place in non-conformist burial grounds, the survival rate of these registers, if they ever existed, is much poorer than Church of England registers.

The example below is taken from the ANNOTATED BURIALS AT WESTBURY ON SEVERN 1889 - 1895

In this register, the vicar gave far greater information than the standard requirement for burial registers of the period. In the register is mentioned the service conducted for a man who had committed suicide and the burial of three unnamed non-conformists, demonstrating that in a standard Church of England burial register these would have gone unrecorded


'18 Dec 1890 Memorandum that there had been 3 other persons buried by Sectaries this year whose names are not entered in this book'





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A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA
« Reply #35 on: Saturday 18 June 11 20:13 BST (UK) »

A GUIDE TO BURIALS IN THE LONDON AREA





WHO MIGHT BE MISSING FROM CHURCH OF ENGLAND BURIAL REGISTERS?



INTENTIONALLY MISSING



SUICIDES


Suicide ‘whilst of sound mind’ was considered by the state to be a serious crime. A suicide’s property could be forfeited to the crown. The church considered suicide ‘whilst of sound mind’ a mortal sin. It was customary in England to bury suicides at cross roads, but not infrequently for charity's sake, the body was interred in the graveyard without ceremony. Coroner’s juries were often sympathetic and returned verdicts of ‘suicide while of unsound mind’. Better to be judged mad than a criminal and denied a Christian burial. If the jury returned the rarer verdict of 'felo de se', felon of himself, the suicide was deemed a felon and their property was confiscated.

Though in the context of the suicide of Ophelia in Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, SHAKESPEARE LAW LIBRARY has an informative article on the church’s response to the burials of suicides.
Penalties against suicides and their families were gradually reduced throughout the nineteenth century. In 1823, the Right to Burial Act allowed for the burial of felo de se suicides in the churchyard. In 1870, the Abolition of Forfeiture Act removed the penalty of forfeiting the suicide’s property to the Crown. No religious ceremony could be obtained for a felo de se until the Burial Laws Amendment Act of 1880, though the full burial service was still denied them and until 1882; the suicide’s body was buried privately between the hours of nine and twelve at night. Under the Suicide Act of 1961, suicide no longer became a crime, though assisting someone to commit suicide still is. The Church of England proposed Book of Common Prayer (1928) began the order for the burial of the dead with this statement.


'Here it is to be noted that the Office ensuing is not to be used for any that die unbaptized, or for any that are excommunicate, or have laid violent hands upon themselves, or in the act of committing any grievous crime.
If question arise as to whether this Office should be used for the burial of any person, reference shall (if time and opportunity permit,) be made to the Bishop, who shall decide the question.'




EXCOMMUNICANTS


The Church of England could excommunicate parishioners for many moral offences, as well as heresy. A modified form of the burial service was available for excommunicants following the Burial Laws Amendment Act of 1880, though this was merely the formalisation of the process where sympathetic clergymen absolved deceased excommunicants and read the normal burial service. Those who were excommunicated because they had committed a grievous crime, if they died unrepentant, would be deprived of the normal burial service. From 1745 onwards the relatives of excommunicants, where necessary, could compel their burial in a churchyard.



CRIMINALS


Taken from THE HISTORY OF JUDICIAL HANGING IN BRITAIN 1735-1964
 

‘From 1752 the bodies of executed murderers were not returned to their relatives for burial. Up to 1832, except in a case of murderers where the court had ordered dissection or gibbeting it was usual for the criminal's body to be claimed by friends or relatives for burial. This burial could take place in consecrated ground provided that the person had not committed murder. In earlier times (pre 1752) it was not unusual for murderers to be buried under the gallows on which they had suffered. Dissection was removed from the statute book on the 1st of August 1832, by the Anatomy Act. The same act directed that the bodies of executed criminals belonged to the Crown and were now to be buried in the prison grounds in unmarked graves, often several to a grave to save space. Typically, the person was placed into a cheap pine coffin or even a sack and covered with quicklime, which was thought to hasten the process of decomposition of the body. This practice was later abandoned, as the quicklime was found to have a preserving effect. The Capital Punishment Amendment Act of 1868 required that a formal inquest be held after an execution and that the prisoner be buried within the grounds of the prison unless directed otherwise by the sheriff of the county. This practice continued up to abolition. After the inquest, the body was placed into the coffin, which had large holes bored in the sides and ends. The burial normally took place at lunchtime and was carried out by prison officers and overseen by the chaplain who conducted a simple burial service. The position of the grave was recorded in the Burial Register for the prison. Prisons in major cities soon had quite large graveyard areas. Where prisons were demolished for redevelopment the bodies were removed and buried elsewhere, normally in consecrated ground.’






Census information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk