Two railed tombs remain, including that of former churchwarden Joseph Merceron. It is mostly grassed over, with large plane trees by an oval path to the north of the church. There are remains of the C19th railings on the boundary with St Matthew’s Row. A rose garden is to the south of the church and an area to the east has formal beds, palms and other ornamental planting.
The parish of Bethnal Green was created in 1742, and the new church of St Matthew was consecrated in 1746, although an earlier church had been proposed under the Fifty New Churches Commissioners. The population had grown particularly following the arrival of Huguenots, who established their textile industry here. The Watch House in the churchyard was built in 1754 as a measure to prevent body snatching. The churchyard closed for burials in the mid 1850s and in 1896 was turned into a public garden when the majority of tombs were removed.
Visitor FacilitiesOpening is unrestricted.
- Access & Directions
Access Contact DetailsOpening is unrestricted.
DirectionsTube: Bethnal Green (Central) then bus. London Overground: Shoreditch High Street. Rail: Bethnal Green then bus. Bus: 8, D3
London Parks and Gardens Trust