Ely Cemetery could see group formed to create archive to help with family history research

The group to preserve the history of Ely Cemetery is one step closer to being created. Photo: Mike Rouse

The group to preserve the history of Ely Cemetery is one step closer to being created. Photo: Mike Rouse

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A group to preserve the history of Ely Cemetery by setting up an archive to help with family history research is one step closer to being created.

City of Ely Council announced plans to create a ‘Friends of Ely Cemetery’ group last month.

Since then several people have come forward to show their interest in the idea, with an initial meeting held last week (July 18).

Ely Cemetery was opened in 1855 and is the resting place of 16,000 former residents of the city covering 13 acres.

The City Council agreed to create the group - should there be enough interest - to see what might be done to build on existing records and to create an archive that will be of interest to those looking into their family tree and the history of Ely.

Mayor of Ely Councillor Mike Rouse said: “Delighted to see so many local people answering Cllr Chris Phillips’ call to form a ‘Friends of Ely Cemetery’.

“Let’s hope the group is formed. We have a beautiful cemetery and it is full of history and stories of our citizens.”

There are complete records of burials in the cemetery and some interred there have fine memorials – but many others do not and their resting places are unmarked.

It is thought that the first task would be collecting of memorial inscriptions from some of the earlier graves where weathering has caused damage and decay.

Other projects might include the gathering of biographical information and the setting up of a website as a resource for people visiting the cemetery and for family historians.

If you would be interested in helping to develop this project or simply have ideas about what might be done please contact: Mrs Sarah Jay, at The City of Ely Council, Sessions House Lynn Road Ely CB7 4EG, Tel 01353 661047 or email sarah.jay@cityofelycouncil.org.uk

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