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Western Synagogue Cemetery, Kensington (also known as Western Cemetery, Western Jewish Cemetery, Brompton Cemetery)7312

Brief Description

The cemetery remains hidden and is inaccessible to the public, the boundary with Fulham Road has a high brick wall, with numerous mature trees including ash and plane, but a number of taller monuments are visible. Meller describes this unexpected cemetery here as 'more typical of Prague than London'.


The site here was purchased for £400 in December 1815 by the Western Synagogue and opened that same year as the first Jewish burial ground west of the City, and at that time it was known as Brompton Cemetery. In 1884 the Western Synagogue had purchased land in Edmonton for a new cemetery for general burials. The old cemetery soon became dilapidated after its closure. Restoration was completed by 1898.

Detailed Description

The site at Queen's Elm was purchased for the Western Synagogue cemetery in 1815 and it opened as the first Jewish burial ground west of the City, then known as Brompton Cemetery. The Western Synagogue dates from 1761 and is the oldest surviving Ashkenazi Synagogue. The cemetery closed in 1885, although burials in reserved graves continued until at least 1910. It became dilapidated after closure, but in 1897 Mr Ellis Franklin paid for its restoration, which was completed in 1898 and its maintenance was later provided for by the Adel Hopkins (nee Rootstein) Estate. The cemetery remains hidden behind high brick wall, but a number of taller monuments and its mature trees are visible.

Sources consulted:

Hugh Meller & Brian Parsons, 'London Cemeteries, An Illustrated Guide and Gazetteer', 4th edition (The History Press, 2008); Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993), p109; Chelsea Park / Carlyle Conservation Area Proposals Statement; David W Weatherill, article in monthly newsletter of the Genealogical Society of Victoria, August 2006; Arthur Barnett, The Western Synagogue Through Two Centuries (1761-1961); Cemetery Scribes website, 'History - Brompton (Fulham Road) Cemetery'

For more information see

Access & Directions


Tube: South Kensington (District, Circle, Piccadilly)


  • London Parks and Gardens Trust