The Heritage Open Day for our unique Burial Grounds in beautiful Chilterns countryside was a resounding success, with 120+ visitors enjoying history tours from Alison Bailey, of the Amersham Museum and Cathy Wolveridge’s wildlife tours of the grounds and the adjacent chalkland meadow.
The beautiful 1920s Chapel (which is usually closed except for funeral services) was crowded for a short Service of Reflection and Remembrance, led by Peter Flory of St Leonard’s Church. The service included readings by Cathy Woolveridge (Parish Chairman) and Katy Flory (Sexton), and music played by pianist Pamela Hick. A remembrance candle was lit, and the names of loved ones were read out by Emma and Zoë Large.
The Burial Ground is the last resting place of some amazing Chesham Bois residents – some with stories of national significance – as well as being the site of four Commonwealth War graves. Local historian, Alison Bailey, of Amersham Museum led visitors on tours of the grounds and told the stories of great wartime bravery, of an artist and suffragist who mixed in high society, of a conscientious objector who rose to the peerage and of many others. Cathy Woolveridge continued the tours, covering the flora and fauna of the rare chalk grassland.
Visitors were also able to view the maps and records of the burial ground. Some visitors came to discover more detail about where family members were buried, and others shared their stories and memories with the Parish team to contribute to the ongoing history research. And for those who wanted to take the opportunity to choose their own special plot for the future, help and support was on hand.
For those that missed the Burial Ground Open Day, this lovely Burial Ground is open for pedestrian access all year round. Those wanting further advice or information about the services provided by the Burial Ground should contact the Parish Clerk (01494 432585).
The open day event was organised by Chesham Bois Parish Council in association with the national Heritage Open Days festival.