One of the Magnificent Seven cemeteries in London is the Brompton Cemetery.
It is managed by The Royal Parks, and it is in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. In the early 19th century in London, there was a dramatic growth of the population, and the mortality rates were drastically increased. The need for burial grounds expanded so to relieve the situation, the Act of Parliament established the Brompton Cemetery, and it was erected in 1839. At that time, the cemetery was known as the West of London and Westminster Cemetery, and it was opened for the first time in 1840.
It is one of the oldest and most distinguished cemeteries in Britain consecrated by the Bishop of London, Charles Blomfield, in June 1840. When the Parliament gave the authorization for the expanding, many commercial companies helped.
The West London and Westminster Cemetry Company was one of them which provided a large new burial area at Brompton. Stephen Geary was the architect of the company who designed the monument known as King’s Cross for George IV. In the cemetery, there are 35, 000 monuments which mark the graves of more than 205, 000 burials.
They are variations of simple headstones and richly constructed family mausoleums. Also, on the north end of the cemetery is the Garden of Remembrance which was made for cremated remains. The Brompton cemetery even got the National Lottery grant for restoration, and a visitor center was developed. Previously, on the site, there were market gardens until it was purchased by John Gunter of Fulham.
The architect who constructed the original setting of the cemetery was Benjamin Baud who placed a chapel similar in style to the Basilica of St. Peter’s in Rome. There are long colonnades which are flanked by catacombs. The catacombs were made as a cheaper alternative burial, but unfortunately, they were not very popular, and only 500, 000 of them were sold.
Today, because of the remarkable mausoleums and monuments, and the notable people who rest there, the Brompton cemetery is a popular place to visit.
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Some of the notable people buried in the cemetery are the writer George Borrow, the actor Stanley Brett, the doctor who discovered the cause of cholera John Snow, the architect Francis Fowke, the actress Marie Lohr, the activist Emmeline Pankhurst, James Mc Donald, the president of the Anglo-American Oil Company, the poet Robert Story, and Frederick Richards Leyland, who’s monument is the only one listed as Grade II*. It is known as the only Crown Cemetery which is managed by the Royal Parks, and, at the same time, is a useful nature reserve.