Home page 
  Introduction    Books     Links   City    North London   South London

Key:    Current observations and notes    Holmes (1897)      Other sources     Maps


Additional information taken from Southwark's Burial Places by kind permission of author Mr Ron Woollacott.

St. Mary Magdalene's Churchyard.  
Medieval church rebuilt 1675-6. Includes part of the abbey ground. Opened as a garden in 1883. Mrs Wood's curious inscription is still there, though many of the other tombs and monuments have been moved. 

Rather over 1½ acres.
This was enlarged in 1783 and 1810, and contains the remains of an ancient cemetery belonging to Bermondsey Abbey. It is maintained as a public garden by the vestry, the rector reserving certain rights. It is well laid out, and forms a most useful and attractive garden.  (Holmes)

BERMONDSEY CHURCH YARD is very much crowded; many of the tomb stones are sunk into the ground, and the whole site may be said to be covered with monuments. The two following are singular :-

" In memory of Mary, first wife of William Collier, who died 3rd of August, 1815, aged 60 years, after having been afflicted 19 years and 7 months, with the rheumatism, and was under 19 Doctors, &c. without any good effect. She was buried in Bunhill Fields."

" Here lie the remains of Susannah Wood, wife of Mr. James Wood, of the Kent Road, Mathematical Instrument Maker, who, after a long and painful illness, which she bore with the greatest fortitude, departed this life the 16th June, 1810, in the 58th year of her age. She was tapped 97 times, and had 461 gallons of water taken from her, without ever lamenting her case, or fearing the operation."

Ground in immediate proximity to this place is advertised to be "let on lease" for building purposes. (Walker 1839)

St. James’s Churchyard, Bermondsey, Jamaica Road. 
Maintained as a park and children's playground. Gravestones, few with readable inscriptions, are stacked along the east wall. Basil Clarke says the church was built on 'catacombs'.

 l¾ acres. In use c. 1829 - 1855. It was extensively used for a drying-ground for clean clothes when the Metropolitan Public Gardens Association secured it in 1886 and laid it out as a garden. it is maintained by the vestry. (Holmes)

Tombstones - a cheery backdrop to the playground

Roman Catholic Ground, Parker's Row . 
No burials after 1853.Church destroyed in WW2; rebuilt 1960. The enlarged church takes up much of the space - no indications of any remaining burials. 

The land was given for the purpose in 1833 or 1834. The ground between the church and the road measures about 300 square yards, and was very much overcrowded. It is closed and untidy, with no tombstones. Burials also took place in the garden, which is used as a recreation ground for the schools, and is neatly kept. (Holmes)

Friends Burial-ground, Long Lane. - ¼ acre.  
Woollacott says closed 1855. Laid out as a children's playground in 1895.  Now a bare rectangle of rough grass. 

This was bought in 1697 for £120. It was closed in 1844, but in 1860 a large number of coffins, &c., were brought there and interred when Southwark Street was made and the Worcester Street burial-ground annihilated. It is being laid out for the public, and will be maintained by the Bermondsey Vestry, who have it on lease from the Society of Friends. There are no gravestones in it. (Holmes)

Ground to the right of the fence. To the left is the Ebenezer ground.

Ebenezer Burial-ground, Long Lane.  
Also known as Neckinger Rd Chapel Burial Ground. Adjacent to Friends ground above. Tombstones still extant. Now a children's playground. 

This adjoins the above ground, and it is hoped that it may eventually be added to the garden. It was formed about 100 years ago. It originally belonged to the Independent Chapel in Beck Street, Horselydown, and subsequently to the trustees of Ebenezer Baptist Chapel. There is a "minister's vault" in the centre. It is closed and untidy, 220 square yards in extent. (Holmes)

Guy's Hospital Burial-ground, Kipling Street (Formerly Nelson Street.)

Now the western part of Guy Street Park, a well looked after recreation ground. 

This is nearly 100 years old, and is rather over ½ acre. Since being closed for burials it has been let as a builder's yard. The Bermondsey Vestry is now negotiating for its purchase as a recreation ground. (Holmes)

Southwark Chapel Graveyard (Wesleyan), Long Lane.
Closed 1850s. Cleared in 1928 for redevelopment, remains reburied at Nunhead cemetery.
Burial-ground now a rose garden. Access from Manciple St
  900 square yards. This is on the west side of the chapel, which dates from 1808. It is closed, and contains a few gravestones and a hen-coop. (Holmes)