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Highgate Cemetery Visiting News

Unique opportunity for visitors to one 

of london's magnificent seven Cemeteries

inside The west cemetery

If you have ancestors buried in Highgate Cemetery's West Cemetery, you may have found it difficult to visit their graves. In recent years, visitors have been allowed into this part of the cemetery by guided tour only. 

This summer, as an experiment, Highgate Cemetery is offering visitors the opportunity to experience Highgate Cemetery West on their own, without a guide.  Numbers are limited to preserve the tranquillity. This will be possible on Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets go on sale 5 weeks beforehand, so it is worth checking back later if the date you want is not yet listed. Tickets will not be sold at the Cemetery. If you turn up without a ticket, you will be refused entry. And tickets cannot be changed or refunded. 

The cemetery is divided by a main road between the East and West Cemeteries. The East Cemetery has different visiting arrangements and can usually be accessed more easily. 

You can find the details of your ancestors' Highgate grave details in the original burial registers. These are held at the cemetery itself and at Camden Local Studies and Archives Centre in Holborn. However, they can be searched easily online from the comfort of your own home. They are available on the internet only through Deceased Online

"Portrait of Christina Rossetti; head and shoulders, turned slightly to left, hair drawn up into a plaited chignon." (see British Museum)

The West side is dominated by gothic architecture, much for which is crumbling. This is why this side can usually only be visited by regular guided tours

The West Cemetery is home to Victorian notables such as:
  •  the boxer Tom Sayers (1826-1865)
  • Charles Dickens’ wife (1815-1879), younger brother and parents
  • the pre-Raphaelites, Christina Rossetti (1830-1894), Elizabeth Siddal (1829-1862), William Rossetti (1829-1919) and Frances Polidori Rossetti (1800-1886)
  • owner of The Observer newspaper, Julian Beer (1836-1880)
  • publisher of the London StandardGeorge Samuel Bentley (1828-1895) 
  • criminal mastermind, Adam Worth (1844-1902)
  • scholar of the Orient, Robert Caesar Childers (1838-1876) 
  • scientists, Jacob Bronowski (1908-1974) and Michael Faraday (1791-1867)
  • Charles Cruft (1852-1938), founder of the eponymous dog show
  • menagerie exhibitor George Wombwell (1777-1850
  • theatrical magician, David Devant (1868-1941)
  • actor Patrick Whymark (1926-1970)
  • authors Beryl Bainbridge (1932-2010), Radclyffe Hall (1880-1943), John Galsworthy (memorial only), and Stella Gibbons (1902-1989), author of Cold Comfort Farm, who lived for many years within walking distance of the cemetery. 
The most famous resident of the cemetery as a whole is Karl Marx (1818-1883), who resides in the East Cemetery. Visitors flock continually to his enormous memorial, which was erected in 1956. 

Have you visited Highgate Cemetery, or do you have relatives buried there? Do contact us via our Twitter or Facebook pages, and let us know!


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