|All Saints' Churchyard Harrow Weald and All Saints' Churchyard Extension||Harrow|
All Saints Church was built as a simple stone church and was later extended. The walled burial ground was in use from 1845/6 and contains a number of fine trees, including an old yew. At the entrance is a lych-gate, from where a lime avenue leads to the church. Among those buried here are Edmund Crosse and Thomas Blackwell, who built up the famous business that bears their name. To the south of Uxbridge Road All Saints' Churchyard Extension or New Cemetery was opened in 1884.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/12/2011
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Harrow Weald is first referred to in c.1303, at that time called Waldis; by the late C14th it had become Walde and by the mid C16th was known as Harrow Weald. The parish of Harrow Weald was created in 1845 and building of All Saints Church began in 1846 and it was dedicated in 1849. It was initially built as a simple stone church with chancel, designed by J T Harrison in 1842-5. The nave and south aisle were added in 1849-52 by William Butterfield, who later widened the north aisle and built the tower in 1889-92. Within the church are stained glass windows by William Morris's Company including work by Edward Burne-Jones. A monument commemorates W S Gilbert (d.1911), of Gilbert and Sullivan, who lived nearby at Grims Dyke (q.v.). The church is bounded by low walling to Uxbridge Road and the entrance is through a picturesque lych-gate that has a dedication dated 1866 to Edward Monro, who served as the first vicar of All Saints' until 1860. From here a long walk flanked by pollarded lime trees leads to the church. The churchyard is bounded to east and west with horse chestnut trees and behind the church is a block of woodland, chiefly self-sown and containing sycamore scrub, but with occasional yew, holly and laurel.
The churchyard was in use for burials from 1845/6 and the earliest legible memorial is that of John Seagrave of 1847, a vase on a plinth to the west of the path, and further up the path is the grave of Jane Islip (d.1849), and her sister Mary (d.1851). Among notable monuments in the churchyard are the tombs of Edmund Crosse and his wife, c.1863, and close by the tomb of the Blackwell family, c.1871. Edmund Crosse and Thomas Blackwell were friends all their lives, having met when they were both working as 15 year olds for West & Wyatt, food preservers in oil. They bought the business in 1830 when Mr Wyatt retired and it became Crosse and Blackwell. Blackwell's son, Thomas Francis Blackwell, was a major landowner and farmer in the area, living at The Cedars (q.v.). He was an important local benefactor, sponsoring the rebuilding of All Saints in 1890. The family is recalled in the Blackwell Hall, which opened in 1985 to replace an earlier church hall that had been donated by Mr and Mrs Blackwell in memory of their two sons who died in WWI
Behind the church today is a quiet garden with a gazebo and seating, and a woodland path that borders a grassed area for children, adjacent to which is the site of the original vicarage. This and the woodland beyond, Bentley Day Centre Wood, is now the Bentley Old Vicarage Nature Reserve, which has paths running through it and contains a number of fine trees including Lombardy poplar and apple trees. The main areas of the churchyard and the woodland are now managed for wildlife interest, with grass in the churchyard left uncut until July. The churchyard is particularly pretty in the spring when primroses, violets, celandine and anemones abound.
To the south of the church across Uxbridge Road is All Saints' Churchyard Extension, a triangular site with a hawthorn hedge boundary with scattered trees and tombs set among the grass, and an informal path between two entrances. Also known as the New Cemetery, this opened in 1884 to provide more space for burials, and was donated by Alexander Sim of Harrow Weald Park (q.v.). Sim was buried here in 1885, later joined by his wife in 1909; others buried here include Captain William Leefe Robinson VC, an RAF airman in WWI who shot down the Cuffley Zeppelin in September 1916.
All the memorial inscriptions in both the churchyard and cemetery extension have been recorded by the Central Middlesex Family History Society.
Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993); Bridget Cherry and Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England London 3: North West' (Penguin, 1999 ed); Pamela Davies, 'The Parish Church of St Anselm Hatch End' 1998; All Saints' Church website; Walter W Druett 'The Stanmores and Harrow Weald Through the Ages' (Hillingdon Press, 1938)