|Bancroft Road Cemetery||Tower Hamlets|
Bancroft Road Cemetery is a small Jewish burial ground that opened in 1811, set up by the Amude Yesharim (The Pillars of the Upright), who opened their Maiden Lane Synagogue in 1811. The cemetery was closed for burials in 1907 and was much neglected during the C20th, suffering bomb damage in WWII. It consists of a small strip of land bordered by railings to Bancroft Road and walled to the back. There are a number of upright headstones, monuments and gravestones laid flat on the ground, and a few trees.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/03/2008
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The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
Bancroft Road Cemetery, March 2008. Photo: S Williams
Click photo to enlarge.
The Amude Yesharim (The Pillars of the Upright) were a group of Jewish congregants who had separated from the Western Synagogue early in the C19th. They eventually established themselves in Maiden Lane in Covent Garden where they opened Maiden Lane Synagogue in 1811. They had purchased a plot of land called Globe Fields for a burial ground in 1810, and the first burial took place in 1811. It closed for burials in 1907, although the burial of Philip Philips is recorded in 1918, and there were around 500 burials here. According to Mrs Basil Holmes writing in 1896 it was still in use with 'room for about four more graves'. Among the graves was that of Rabbi David Joseph (d.1871) of the Maiden Lane Synagogue who was also Secretary to the Loyal United Brethren Benefit Society. The Maiden Lane Synagogue, now defunct, continued to own this strip of land in Bancroft Road, but its upkeep was neglected and the walls in particular were in need of repair by the 1920s, when some maintenance was carried out. Damage was caused by bombing in WWII and the state of the cemetery continued to be of concern. It was later incorporated into the Federation of Synagogues Cemetery at Edmonton (q.v.) and the register remains with the Burial Society of the Western Marble Arch Synagogue. Bordered by railings along Bancroft Road, the small ground is not publicly accessible.
Wolfston, Greater London Cemeteries and Crematoria, 3rd ed., London 1994; Bancroft Library, Clippings; The United Synagogue website; Cemetery Scribes website, www.cemeteryscribes.com: 'History - Bancroft (Maiden Lane) Cemetery' and Marcus Roberts History - Maiden Lane Synagogue Burial Ground (www.jtrails.org.uk) (conflicting information); Dr Sharman Kadish, 'Jewish Heritage in England' (English Heritage, 2006)