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It's not all doom and gloom...

Posted on January 08, 2015 by Dot & Cross

Highgate Cemetery

Not long after Christmas we visited Highgate Cemetery. The Cemetery is split into two areas: the East and the West, and we visited the West side one Saturday afternoon. Due to the state of the graves and its Grade I listing it was only accessible via a guided tour which was ideal as we got to find out so much more than if we were left to walk around ourselves. It opened in 1839 as part of the ‘Magnificent Seven’ cemeteries that were built on the outskirts of London due to a major shortage of space in the city. Highgate is probably one of the grandest despite it going into decline in the 1970s and it is still evident when walking through. There were some beautiful structures and all with a story to tell, but what was interesting was the Victorians fascination of Ancient Egypt which you could see in some of the more grander plots (Egyptian Avenue and Circle of Lebanon). But its beauty was in its decay and how nature had grown in its environment.


A head stone cross that was almost hidden amongst the trees


Gothic splendour of the Mears family who owned the Whitechapel Bell Foundry from 1781-1865


A pyramid tombstone, one of the many references to the Egyptians

 
The entrance to Egyptian Avenue which was very imposing (the photo doesn't do it justice)


The Circle of Lebanon, reserved for the very rich and has a beautiful Cedar tree planted on the top


Tomb of George Wombwell, a famous ‘menagerie exhibitor’ from the 1800s. He was the first to breed Lions in captivity and Nero, a docile animal that would give rides to young children, rests with his owner on top


A striking Chestnut tree on the edges of the Cemetery


Detail from a tomb helpfully showing where the entrance was

Posted in Design, Places


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