|Hendon Cemetery and Crematorium||Barnet|
Hendon Park Cemetery was founded in 1899 by the Abney Park Cemetery Company. Entered through a gatehouse 'inspired by old Hertfordshire churches', the cemetery has a rural ambience, with a stream running through it, and in its early days boasted thousands of trees, now somewhat depleted. In the centre is the flint-faced chapel, to which the Crematorium was added in 1922. The cemetery has separate sections devoted to particular nationalities, including Russian, Greek, Swiss and Japanese, the latter laid out as a traditional garden.
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Hendon Cemetery and Crematorium, Main Entrance, September 2000. Photo S Williams
Click photo to enlarge.
Hendon Park Cemetery was founded by the Abney Park Cemetery Company, which had already set up Abney Park Cemetery (q.v.) in 1840 and Chingford Mount Cemetery (q.v.) in 1884. The land which the Company purchased here in 1899 were once part of Dollis Farm. The cemetery is entered through a 'quaint Old English Style' (Pevsner) Gothic and Tudoresque gatehouse designed by architect Alfred A. Bonella. In the initial years the burial services took place in a temporary chapel building. Bonella also designed the flint-faced chapel in the centre of the cemetery, which opened in July 1903, and was 'inspired by old Hertfordshire churches' according to the cemetery brochure of 1903. The chapel has an archway beneath a tower with corner turret and spike; inside is a terracotta reredos by Cantagalli, a copy of Luca Della Robbia's 'Resurrection' in Florence Cathedral. The Crematorium was added in 1922, built within cloisters that adjoined the chapel. At that time the word 'Crematorium' was added to the Gothic stone lettering at the entrance.
The cemetery has a rural ambience, with a stream running through it crossed by a number of rustic bridges, and, like Abney Park Cemetery, in its early days Hendon Cemetery boasted thousands of trees. The cemetery brochure of 1903 listed the fine variety of trees including fir, pine, ilex, holly, black and Lombardy poplars, oak, elm, maple, ash, plane, and rose acacia; 'clumps of trees dot the meadows in which contrasts and harmonies have been studied, for in them we see such different forms and colours.'. Although this plethora of planting is now much reduced, the cemetery is pleasantly tree-filled.
Within the cemetery layout today are various separate sections devoted to particular nationalities: Russian, Greek, Swiss and Japanese, the latter planned as a traditional Japanese garden with firs and Cherry trees. The Greek plot was purchased after their section at West Norwood Cemetery was full. Among the monuments is a standing bronze figure commemorating C H King who died in 1919 and a tondo of a kneeling woman in memory of Edwin Roscoe Mullins, the sculptor whose work is visible on the Fine Art Society in Bond Street (d.1907). The cemetery was taken over by Barnet Council in 1956.
Hugh Meller & Brian Parsons,'London Cemeteries, An Illustrated Guide and Gazetteer', 4th edition (The History Press, 2008); Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England: London 4: North' (Penguin, 1998)