The disused burial ground

Survey of London: Volume 4, Chelsea, Pt II. Originally published by London County Council, London, 1913.

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'The disused burial ground', in Survey of London: Volume 4, Chelsea, Pt II, (London, 1913) pp. 87. British History Online [accessed 24 April 2024]

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This burial ground was the gift of Sir Hans Sloane to the parish, and was consecrated in 1736. It has long been disused and is now a recreation ground—in fine weather—for the old men and women of the adjoining workhouse. It is a not unpicturesque sight to see the men in their scarlet caps and the women in their blue cotton gowns grouped among the worn and weathered stones.

Among those who lie buried here are Andrew Millar (d. 1768) a bookseller of note; John Martyn, F.R.S., the botanist (d. 1768) and Eulalia his wife (d. 1748—9), who was the daughter of Dr. King, rector of Chelsea; Dr. Sloane Elsmere, rector (d. 1766); John Baptist Cipriani, the artist (d. 1785); Lady Rous (d. 1777), widow of Sir William Rous, Alderman; and Rev. Philip Withers, D.D., the pamphleteer (d. 1790). (fn. 1)

A pair of 18th century iron gates, with overthrow of scroll work, and a side gate, considerably renovated, remain at the entrance to the burial ground from Arthur Street.

Bibliographical references.

Thomas Faulkner, Chelsea and its Environs (2nd edition, 1829).

Alfred Beaver, Memorials of Old Chelsea (1892).

Reginald Blunt, An Historical Handbook to Chelsea (1900).

Mrs. Basil Holmes, Burial Grounds of London.

In the Council's ms. collection is:—

Photograph of wrought-iron gates, and piers.


  • 1. A complete list of inscriptions will be included in a future volume of the Survey of London, which will embody the monuments in the Parish Church and Burial Grounds.