Romsey Cemetery 4966

Romsey, Test Valley, Hampshire, England

Brief Description

Features of Romsey Cemetery include a tile-capped boundary wall, an Italianate non-conformist chapel and a Gothic Church of England chapel. After much deterioration, the Italianate chapel was restored by Test Valley Archaeological Society in the 1990s.

History

Romsey Cemetery was opened in 1857. It was designed by W. Lower of Guildford.

Visitor Facilities

This is a municipal site, which is open daily from sunrise to sunset.

Detailed Description

The final cost was upwards of £3000 and included the construction of a roadside tile-capped boundary wall, a lodge cottage with cemetery superintendent's office and two chapels. Both chapels were designed by Lower. A Gothic-style chapel was originally for the use of Church of England members. It is now used by all denominations, though not very often, and an Italianate chapel was for use by non-conformists.

The Italianate chapel had brick arches well-gauged and skilfully cut, with an interior totally of yellow brick with tuck pointing. It subsequently became a groundsman's store and deteriorated. A Grade II listed building, it was restored in the 1990s by the Test Valley Archaeological Trust with the help of public subscriptions. It is now used as an archaeological store and workplace.

The tree planting scheme was entirely evergreen species that were available in 1857, and was probably influenced by Loudon. Between 1897 and 1910 the area of Romsey Cemetery was doubled. It is now surrounded on three sides by housing, with playing fields on the opposite side of Botley Road.

Features
  • Boundary Wall
  • Description: There is a roadside tile-capped boundary wall.
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  • Chapel
  • Description: A Gothic-style chapel was originally for the use of Church of England members but is now used by all denominations.
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  • Chapel
  • Description: The Italianate chapel had brick arches, well-gauged and skilfully cut, with an interior totally of yellow brick with tuck pointing.
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  • Tree Feature
  • Description: The tree planting scheme was entirely evergreen species that were available in 1857, and was probably influenced by Loudon.
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Access & Directions

Access Contact Details

This is a municipal site, which is open daily from sunrise to sunset.
Authorities

Civil Parish

  • Romsey
History

Detailed History

Parliament passed Burial Acts in the 1850s as a result of overcrowding of graveyards and outbreaks of diseases such as cholera. In 1854 an Act was passed enabling Boroughs to use a rate for a cemetery and Burial Boards were set up for this purpose.

In Romsey this led to the closure of the Abbey Graveyard and the purchase of land to set up a new cemetery. This was after 1854, when an appeal to Lord Palmerston not to close the old graveyard had been turned down. Lord Palmerston opted to be interred in the new cemetery (died 1865) rather than in Westminster Abbey.

The Burial Board borrowed £2000 in 1856 and a new cemetery covering 3 acres, two-thirds of which were consecrated, was opened by the Bishop of Winchester at Whitenap Hill in 1857. Laid out to the design of W Lower, a Guildford-based architect and Romsonian, who probably trained in the Royal Engineers, the site was very carefully chosen after soil percolation and other tests had been carried out.

Period

  • Mid 19th Century
Contact

Telephone

01793 445050

Official Website

Click Here

Other websites

Owners

  • Test Valley Borough Council

    Beech Hurst, Weyhill Road, Andover, Hampshire, SP10 3AJ
References

Contributors

  • Hampshire Gardens Trust

  • Jessica Spinney

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  • Frank Green

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