Monday, 20 June 2016

Angels and ivy











I went to a wedding at a cemetery the other day. It's a glorious place, overgrown, atmospheric, full of wildlife. It's Victorian, originally laid out as an ancient Greek style landscape with a number of grand buildings, now listed. It fell into disrepair in the second half of the last century, with the groundsmen unable to keep up the maintenance of the 42 acres.

Around the turn of this century it seemed likely that the cemetery would be lost, but after a monumental effort funds were raised and restoration has begun. There's a cafe now, and walks around the grounds, and in one of the buildings there's space for weddings.

I only had my tiny camera with me, so the photos aren't great. It's somewhere I'd love to visit again, on a dark moody day, to take some more pictures with my other camera. Hopefully the restoration won't be too vigorous. The slightly wild look is wonderful. Much better than manicured grass and pristine chippings. This is what a cemetery should look like. Gradually fading back to nature.

21 comments:

  1. I love the slightly wild look of the cemetery but, I have to say, those stone angels are just creepy and the wildness of the surroundings only enhances that. I would not like to be there at dusk.

    I'm such a scaredy cat. xx

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  2. How cool to get married in such an atmospheric place! Wishing you a lovely week. x

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  3. Seems like a morbid place to get married.. but it's pretty amazing. I'm so glad they're taking care of it. I don't think graveyards should be perfect, but they should make sure you can see the headstones. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  4. I do love a nice cemetery. As a child, my walk to school used to take me through one and I loved it. Nowadays, the stone angels always remind me of the Dr. Who story 'Blink' - a bit scary. Interesting place to get married. xx

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  5. An unusual place to marry and I expect rather atmospheric. xx

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  6. Like you I hope they keep the atmosphere, it must be a great place for wildlife. Whereabouts is it?

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    1. It's in Bristol, fairly central. A real wildlife haven in the city. CJ xx

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  7. Real haven for wildlife. Like you I would hope that the restoration is sympathetic to that.

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  8. Ooo! Very atmospheric. Is this Arnos Vale by any chance? So glad it is being restored. It looks beautiful.

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    1. Yes, it is, well spotted. CJ xx

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  9. very lovely. one of the cemeteries in York was turned into a nature reserve, full of wild spaces.

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  10. An interesting post and good pictures. It sounds slightly surreal going to a wedding at a cemetery. Providing they restore it well it should become a haven for wildlife. Flighty xx

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  11. What a beautiful setting, not too sure about getting married in a cemetery or is the wedding building separate?

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  12. A beautiful place to be buried, married or just spend some time in contemplation and quiet I imagine. Hope it changes just the right amount and not too much.

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  13. Churchyards are fantastic places for wildlife - have you read God's Acre? A lovely book and well worth getting. Did the dress fit?! :-) xx

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  14. Amazing place and great photos but I cannot see those angel statues without thinking of Dr Who (and shuddering - and trying Not To Blink!)

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  15. what a glorious place!! so much *feeling* to it. i do hope they don't tidy it up too much...i agree that it's exactly how a cemetery should look.

    i'm with Jayne...had a bit of weeping angels wobble. :O

    xo

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  16. Such an interesting wedding venue. Have to admit I'm a bit of a graveyard enthusiast. They're such tranquil, green spaces, usually untouched by time, with their monuments, statues and gravestones telling us so much about the past. Good to hear restoration is underway but yes, a certain amount of decay is very much a part of the history of the place.

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  17. Is that the Arnos Vale cemetery? I have read about it and is somewhere I would love to visit in Bristol, I always wonder whether any of my ancestors are there! sARAH X

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    1. Yes, it is Arnos Vale, and definitely worth a visit if you happen to be over that way. CJ xx

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  18. Those angels remind me of the scary ones in Dr Who - not sure I would want to get married in such a place, but it is beautiful for a wander around! :-)

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