Who is buried in the Cemetery

Of the 3800 burial spaces in the Cemetery, only about 1350 are now marked with any memorial. Some of these are imposing monuments or substantial headstones but there are also many graves marked by a plain kerb or a simple vase with no inscription. The majority of graves have no memorial.

Although Company records state that it would be ‘a Cemetery chiefly for the middle classes of society’, this does not seem to have been the case. Early records in the Burial Register include individuals’ trade or profession and it is clear that the majority were working people from the densely populated area of Castle End and into the town around Magdalene and Bridge Streets. Trades such as shoe makers, brush makers, harness makers, basket makers, brick makers, bakers, brewers, coopers, dyers, tinsmiths, whitesmiths, builders, carpenters, painters are all often recorded. That said, as the Nonconformist burial place for the town, all levels of society are represented from all parts of the town.

Of the total of 8245 interments, some 1500 are stillborn babies and infants under 1 and a further 952 are children between 1 and 12. These figures remind us of the high infant mortality in the late Victorian time. At the other end of the age range, there are seven centenarians.