Highgate’s Heroes: Pt. 1

There must be thousands and thousands of cemeteries across the world; but the most famous one is probably Highgate Cemetery in London. A Victorian creation, Highgate is a burial ground very different from any other. When I think of a cemetery, I think of ordered crosses in row upon row; or carved headstones laid out on a manicured lawn. Highgate’s aesthetic is completely different, because it is (on the east side at least) essentially a cemetery built in a wood.

I would highly recommend visiting Highgate when in London. It was a very different and restful experience for me– nice to get out of the city’s hustle and bustle and instead take awhile in this cemetery full of London citizens to reflect on life and history. My mum and I visited the cemetery just to see the unearthly wildness of it, but my visit became focused on something altogether different. After only a few moments inside the grounds, I spied the first war grave.

London 2015 Adair 613

Commonwealth war graves are usually marked by a simple headstone of Portland stone. These headstones have an especially resolute look to them in the untamed environs of Highgate.

I hadn’t even expected there to be war graves at Highgate– I guess I thought that war graves are more of a military base or overseas thing. However, I immediately resolved to try to find all that exist at Highgate. Highgate has a very forgotten feel to it, being all overgrown and shaded– and war graves are one thing that I believe must never be forgotten.

London 2015 Adair 529

Bombardier S.A. Ball of the Royal Field Artillery, died 1918

London 2015 Adair 543

Lieutenant A.H. Boney of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps, died 1919

London 2015 Adair 568

Sergeant R.C. Custance of the Royal Air Force, died 1943

London 2015 Adair 574

Sergeant R.O. Ford of the Australian Field Artillery, died 1919

London 2015 Adair 575

Private F.E.B. Buck of the Australian Infantry, died 1919

London 2015 Adair 576

Sergeant Major G.A. Mote, DCM of the Canadian Infantry, died 1917

London 2015 Adair 578

Lieutenant A.C.M. Gordon of the Royal Scots Fusiliers, died 1917

London 2015 Adair 581

Private D.T. Cross of the Hampshire Regiment, died 1919

London 2015 Adair 590

Battery Sergeant Major F. Hill-Jones of the Royal Field Artillery, died 1916

London 2015 Adair 591

Second Lieutenant D.H. Weedon of the Northumberland Fusiliers, died 1917

London 2015 Adair 592

Volunteer F.F. Burgoyne of the Home Guard, died 1940

London 2015 Adair 594

Sergeant R.L. Aiken of the Royal Air Force, died 1941

London 2015 Adair 595

I appreciated the Biblical epitaph on this headstone, sourced from John 15:13. True of all the brave men interred at Highgate, they laid down their lives that we might live.


2 thoughts on “Highgate’s Heroes: Pt. 1

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.