|HCC Site ID:||1859x||Parish:||Hedge End|
|Access:||Public Access-Unregistered green site||Ownership:||Hedge End Town Council|
Location and site
The cemetery is in the centre of Hedge End, a largely modern area of suburban development about 5 miles east of Southampton. It occupies a roughly square area of land surrounded by residential housing on three sides and bounded by Albert Road to the north, on the other side of which is more housing. The ground slopes down from west to east.
At the end of the 18th century Hedge End was open common with little or no settlement, surrounded by a landscape of ancient enclosure and dispersed farmsteads. In the years around 1800 a large proportion of this common was enclosed and a small settlement grew up. By the middle of the twentieth century, Hedge End had grown considerably in size, with the surrounding areas being a mixture of conifer plantations, brickworks and gravels workings.
The land now occupied by the cemetery was in the 1920s rough grassland, with brickworks and kilns on its eastern side. By 1929 the churchyard at St. John the Evangelist Church in Hedge End was almost full, and at a Special Parish Meeting called to discuss the opening of a new cemetery, the purchase of 2 to 3 acres of land (to allow for future expansion) was recommended. In April 1930, the land was purchased from Miss Daisy Redman for £350 part of a £700 loan from the Ministry of Health to purchase and lay out the site, and in October 1931, the first interment took place.
In 1981 the site was designated a lawn cemetery, with all sections to remain laid to lawn, and in 2009 a Management Plan and associated budget was drawn up to ensure the ongoing maintenance of the site beyond its proposed closure in 7-8 years. The following year, in 2010, a specially designed art deco-style archway was commissioned and installed at the entrance. By 2018 over 2000 burials had been recorded and the Green Flag award given for the 8th year running.
Despite being in the middle of a residential area, the cemetery provides a secluded and tranquil place of rest, beautifully maintained with signage, benches, flower and shrub beds, the latter being managed so as to minimise the amount of watering required. The boundaries are flanked and protected with high fences and screened with silver birch, evergreen oak and laurel hedges. There are several mature trees on the site, notably 3 Thuja on the perimeter of the turning circle, with a Tsuga on a mound in the middle of the circle. According to the Council website, full use of the cemetery will be reached by c2025, and Outline Planning Permission is being sought to develop a new cemetery on its land in Kanes Hill on the outskirts of Hedge End.
Summary and Significance
A local cemetery providing a valued service as well as an attractive and secluded haven for both visitors and wildlife.
HGT Research: March 2019
OS 3rd ed 25″ 1909 map
OS 1:1000 2018 Mastermap
Hedge End Town Council website, https://www.hedgeend-tc.gov.uk/local-services/albert-road-
cemetery/history-of-albert-road-cemetery/ – accessed January 2019
Click here for the Town Council website.