This week, with the release of the film Suffragette, Brompton Cemetery in west London, the final resting place of Emmeline Pankhurst, makes an urgent request for public support for its restoration.
The release of the film Suffragette, starring Meryl Streep and Helena Bonham Carter, this week places women’s rights firmly in the spotlight, but did you know that it’s possible to visit Emmeline Pankhurst’s final resting place when you’re next in the British capital? The leader of the British suffragette movement is buried in Brompton, one of London’s Magnificent Seven Cemeteries, which urgently requires public support for its restoration.
Sara Lom, CEO of the Royal Parks Foundation, says: “It is vital that people who have forged Britain’s history are remembered and this is where final resting places can play a key role. The monuments in cemeteries are physical tributes to past heroes, a unique space where people can pay their respects today.”
The UK’s only civilian cemetery owned by the Crown and managed by the Royal Parks, Brompton Cemetery is listed as Grade 1 on the English Heritage Register of Parks and Gardens of Historic Importance and is the final resting place for 205,000 people including notable physician John Snow, cricketer John Wisden and “gentleman” John Jackson.
It is thought that Beatrix Potter, who lived in the Boltons nearby, may have taken the names of some of her characters from tombstones at Brompton. Names of people thought to have been buried there include Mr Nutkins, Mr McGregor, Mr Brock, Mr Tod, Jeremiah Fisher and even a Peter Rabbett.
“The prospect of places like Brompton starting to crumble could mean we lose vital connections with the past, its notable figures and the pivotal events they precipitated,” says Sara Lom. “The film Suffragette is a powerful reminder of how rights have been fought hard for and won, but the tribute must not live solely in the cinema. Instead we urge people to take action and support Brompton to protect our past, and the memories of those heroes. The suffragette movement had at its heart, dignity, purity and hope, values which are as important to our modern world as they were in Emmeline’s Victorian era.”
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