Last year during Easter, I had the opportunity to do a short course Introduction to Human Osteology at the Bournemouth University – it was a fantastic week and I highly recommend the course, in fact I’ll probably do a full post about it in the future. On my bus journey from the town centre to the campus I noticed a bus stop called ‘cemetery junction’ and was instantly intrigued.
On the last afternoon of the course I found time to get off the bus and explore the area. The cemetery after which the junction was named, is Wimbourne Road Cemetery which opened in 1878. It’s a Grade II listed cemetery and it’s easy to see why, especially on this bright and sunny day (I wish I always had such good light for cemetery photography!). I entered the cemetery through the main gate at the southern corner of the site. The cemetery lodge which stands to the left of the gate was constructed in the 1960s. I wonder what happened to the original lodge building? The war memorial is also close to the main gate on the right hand side. Directly in front of me, I could see the chapel building, along an avenue lined with impressive monkey puzzle trees, a species which is native to South America, but which was a favourite import of Victorian horticulturists. I’ve been told that they grow quite rapidly, but only thrive in clean air, so Bournemouth is a great location for them, because the town was not an industrial port in the 19th century, instead earning its fame as a holiday resort.
Close to the chapel there is a rather imposing mausoleum, which sadly has been sealed – presumably to protect it from vandalism.
You can see Wimbourne Road for yourself online, using this incredible panoramic image, but if you ever get a chance to see it in person, it’s really worth exploring in full. Below are just a handful of the interesting memorials I spotted.
One day I hope to return and create a full guided tour. In the meantime if you want to learn more about the cemetery, please click on the resources below. If there are any other sources of information about this cemetery, which I have overlooked, then please let me know in the comments!