Reading Old Cemetery
In Southern England, United Kingdom
How Geocaching Works
The best way to enjoy this cache is to walk along the service road or the serpentine path around the perimeter.
You can drive close to the cache but please don't park on the grass, keep dogs on a lead due to the deer and no climbing on monuments. Please take care when entering and leaving cemetery.
Reading has one of England’s oldest garden cemeteries and is listed as Grade 11 by English Heritage. The cemetery was opened in 1843 by a private company “The Reading Cemetery Company”. According to the Berkshire Chronicle in 1842, the grounds were intended to be ornamentally laid out and planted to afford survivors a solemn and pleasing remembrance of their departed friends. There are 18327 grave spaces and the site covers 4.7 hectares.
The site in Reading due to the location is between the London and Wokingham Roads, and is triangular overall. The 1842 Act of Parliament that established the cemetery stipulated that the consecrated ground was to be separated from that of the no- conformists thus a low wall runs across the cemetery to mark out the separated area. Originally the cemetery had two mortuary chapels provided for last rights before interment, one for Anglicans and one for non-conformists (such as Baptists and Methodists). Both chapels have been demolished but the foundations for the non conformist’s chapel remain.
The site is a wildlife heritage site and has semi-improved grassland lowland grass spices such as red fescue, meadow vetchling, oxeye daisy, common birds foot trefoil and lady’s bedstraw, the site also contains nettle-leaved bellflower and species of bluebell.
There is a family of Muntjac deer that live in the cemetery. A wildlife surveys every 5 years have discovered Song Thrushes and Cinnabar moths in the cemetery. Some of the trees found in the cemetery date from 1840’s including the Cedars, Beech trees and Wellingtonia that stands near to the former Anglican Chapel.
There are many memorials in the cemetery belonging to some of the most historically noteworthy of Reading residents from 1840 – 1970’s. The grade 11 listed memorial to Bernard Laurance Hieatt, a world record holding motorcycle racer and pilot.
Notable graves include those of George Blackall Simonds, sculptor of the Maiwand Lion in Forbury Gardens; Joseph Edward Sydenham, the founder of Reading Football Club who died in 1913, and that of William 'Willie' Wimmera, a native Aboriginal Australian boy who died in 1852 aged 11 from tuberculosis and peritonitis after missionaries brought him to Reading.
Cache placed with the kind permission of Reading Borough Council.
The cemetery gates will be closed each evening 0900 - 1700hrs Winter and 0900 - 2000hrs in the summer
Last Updated: on 4/17/2013 2:01:08 PM Pacific Daylight Time (9:01 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum