|St John's Church Burial Ground||Ealing|
St John's Church Burial Ground surrounds the old parish church of Southall, which was built in 1837/8 and is now a Youth Centre. By the beginning of the C20th, the church had become too small for the needs of its congregation and enlargement of the building was initially considered, building over a section of the graveyard. An alternative scheme went ahead and a new church was built nearby in 1910. There are some good C19th headstones in the secluded churchyard, which is screened from the busy roads by trees and shrubs. Among those buried here are members of the influential Merrick family, after whom Merrick Road is named.
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St John's Church Burial Ground surrounds the old parish church of Southall, which is now a Youth Centre. St John's Church was built in 1837/8 as a chapel of ease to Norwood church and was consecrated in 1841, given to the parish by John Henry Dobbs, the owner of the local vitriol factory. A tablet in the new church of St John's commemorates Dobbs, who died in 1843. Norwood was within the ancient parish of Hayes until 1859; the parish of St John was formed from the Norwood parish in 1850 after Southall's population had increased, largely as a result of the local brickfields industry, the Southall parish later extended in 1880. The Gothic style brick church had a chancel, nave, north and south aisles, and a small spire that was later removed; to the north was St John's parochial school, also established in 1837-8 by Dobbs, which closed in 1891. A church hall was built adjacent in 1893 and a Grand Bazaar to seek funding for it was opened by Princess Mary Adelaide of Teck. St John's Vicarage stood opposite the church on Southall Green.
By the beginning of the C20th, the church had become too small for the needs of its congregation and enlargement of the building was initially considered, building over a section of the graveyard. An alternative scheme went ahead and a new church of St John's was built in 1910, designed by architect C G Miller, its site the former grounds of Elmfield House in Church Avenue. Despite the somewhat derelict appearance particularly at the front of the old church, there are some good C19th headstones in the secluded area behind and to the sides of the building, set among the grass, with trees and shrubs screening the busy roads. Tombstones in the burial ground include those to the influential local Merrick family, after whom Merrick Road is named. Francis Merrick lived in Southall Park (q.v.) and in 1698 obtained a charter from William III enabling him to hold a weekly cattle market on his land there. A regular worshipper at St John's Church was the local painter Ernest Ham (1874-1958), who made many paintings of the local area.
Bridget Cherry and Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England London 3: North West' (Penguin, 1999 ed), p192; Middlesex & County Times, 7/11/1959; Jonathan Oates, 'Images of England: Southall' (Tempus, 2001, 2003 ed); T F T Baker, J S Cockburn, R B Pugh (Eds), Diane K Bolton, H P F King, Gillian Wyld, D C Yaxley, 'A History of the County of Middlesex: Vol 4: Harmondsworth, Hayes, Norwood with Southall, Hillingdon with Uxbridge, Ickenham, Northolt, Perivale, Ruislip, Edgware, Harrow with Pinner' (Victoria County History, 1971)