Sunday, September 10, 2006

Nunhead Cemetery.

Reidski and I had a walk this morning in Nunhead Cemetery. I had never heard of this place until I met Reidski. It covers something like 50 acres of woodland in the middle of Lewisham and it is a stunning place. His lad has announced that he wants to spend Halloween locked up in this place. I confidentally predict he wouldn't last five minutes. It is spooky enough on a sunny September mornng with its cracked Gothic mausoleums and obilisks, and 225,000 dead bodies buried within it. Once inside the gates you forget you are actually somewhere in the middle of one of the biggest cities in the world, the only noises being made by the birds or by the airplanes which cross London every minute.

Today we found a newer part which included the graves of Australian and New Zealander soliders. So sad that those young men ended up buried so far from home, and yet comforting that they are in such a beautiful place and buried alongside colleagues. We also saw the monument mentioned in the link above to the eight boy scouts who drowned off the Isle of Sheppey in 1912 when apparently the whole nation mourned what was known as the Leysdown Tragedy.

If anyone is 'into' Victorian cemeteries there is more information here on the Friends of Nunhead Cemetery site, but if anyone in South London is looking for somewhere different for a walk, it really is a very special place.


Catharine Soulipsis said...

You know, when I'm feeling a bit down I often read a book of translations of Roman epitaphs that I have.

It's just incredibly melancholy when you read in a couple of sentences about the collapse of the hopes and dreams of a baker and his wife with the death of their only child, even if it was two thousand years ago.

I love the fact that you can look over that huge distance in time and just for a moment feel their individual pain.

J.J said...

The children's graves are always very moving. And war graves always get to me too.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for using my photo, but you need to provide a link in your post to my website Colin Gregory Palmer . net to satisfy the CC-BY licence.

J.J said...

Many apologies Mr Palmer. I plead ignorance having simply done a google search and found what I thought was a beautiful photograph, and have removed the offending item. If I were you I would have been flattered to see it used.