…one of my favourite days
One of my colleagues from bread making suggested that while we were in London we might want to check out the Highgate Cemetery where numerous famous authors, actors and politicians were laid to rest. It sounded interesting and it was an opportunity to take our first double decker bus ride.
Highgate Cemetery is divided into two separate areas: the East Cemetery is open daily to the public for a small entrance fee and one is able to roam through the grounds freely; the West Cemetery is only open to guided tours (unfortunately no tours were available on the day we went).
The eastern part of Highgate is a fascinating place to visit. The tombstones and gravesites along the paved pathways are very well cared for while deeper into the woods many stones are overgrown with ivy and falling over. In some ways the latter sites are the more interesting ones to look at. Many of the inscriptions have been worn away with time but some are still legible and give some insight into the lives of the families buried there.
One of the most famous ‘residents’ of Highgate is Karl Marx and most visitors who go there specifically look for his tombstone. He was originally buried in his wife’s grave on a small side path, but in 1956 a new monument featuring a gigantic bust by the socialist sculptor Laurence Bradshaw was installed in a more prominent location. Funds were raised by the Marx Memorial Fund, set up by the Communist Party in 1955.
It would take me too long to list all the famous people who are buried at Highgate. Many soldiers who died in both world wars are also buried here and the cemetery continues to serve the residents of north London to this day. George Michael, the English singer and songwriter who died in 2016 is buried in the west cemetery at Highgate.
….to be continued.