Monday, 4 February 2013

February Collage Photo Festival - Day 4

Today's photograph is the grave of my Great Grandparents, which were my Grandmother's parents.

The location of this is at The Mount Cemetery at Guildford Surrey.

My Great Grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Matthews, nee Elstone purchased the plot for her husband, John Matthews in 1931, on a lease for 75 years. Six years later she herself was interned and this is a photograph of how the grave looked at that time.

As a child, I rarely visited this cemetery, which is one of two at Guildford.

About ten years ago I was emailed by a fellow genealogist, we share several surnames the same, but can not find any connection. Anyway, had I seen the notice about The Mount Cemetery? I replied that I had not and in due course a photo of the sign was emailed across to me. On my next visit to Surrey a few weeks later I went to the Cemetery, located the plot and photographed the grave. 

As I said, the plot had been purchased by my Great Grandmother on a lease for 75 years. That had been what the notice was about. I pondered and upon my return home I contacted the cemetery office and laid claim to the grave and asked that the grave now be placed in my ownership. In doing so, the plot can not be disturbed without my consent and I am responsible for any repairs necessary.

John Matthews had originally hailed from Warwickshire and had moved south to Surrey as a boy with his father, step mother and siblings. Mary Elizabeth Elstone was born in Liphook and had deep genealogical roots across the Surrey and Sussex borders for around 200 years. 


  1. Isn't it wonderful to have some control over what will happen to your ancestors' graves rather than the official vandalism that sometimes occur.

    1. Most definitely. Of course most people go to a different town and perhaps do some retail therapy. I purchase a grave!

  2. I only recently heard about temporary graves. I don't think we have them in the US. It's good that you found out about the lease running out and were able to purchase the grave!


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