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Cemetery records

Norwich cemeteries

Rosary Cemetery

This was established by the Rev Thomas Drummond, a Presbyterian minister, in 1819 and was the first private cemetery in England.

Drummond's aim was to establish a cemetery on freehold land to be secured as a cemetery for all time.
Many Nonconformists chose to be buried here, rather than in a Church of England churchyard.
The NRO holds the following records on microfilm:

  • Burial registers, 1821-1991. Information given includes:
    • Name
    • Place of residence
    • Dates of death and of burial
    • Age
    • The section of the cemetery in which the grave was situated
    • The grave number
  • Prior to 1867, the date of death is not normally included. The registers are arranged chronologically by the date of burial; use the indexes to the registers to find out the burial entry number, burial register number and folio (page) number.
  • Indexes to the burial registers, 1821-1997 - these are arranged alphabetically to the first letter of the surname only. They give the entry number and folio (page) number in the burial register, as well as the section of the cemetery in which the grave was located.
  • Grave books - the plots in Rosary Cemetery were sold as ‘squares’ or graves. The grave books list the owners or purchasers of the graves or squares, rather than the names of the people who were buried there. The numbers underneath the names are the entry numbers in the burial register.

See the list Norwich City Records on Microform Part 2: Cemeteries’ Department in the searchroom for further details.

  • Burial registers, 1821-37, and monumental inscriptions, 1819-1986, have been published in P E Hamlin, Rosary Cemetery Monumental Inscriptions, 1819-1986, and Burials, 1821-37, Norfolk Genealogy, xviii, available on the searchroom shelves. This volume has a name index.
  • Plans of the cemetery, showing the locations of individual grave plots, are available in a black A3 folder in the microform section of the searchroom.
  • The NRO also holds documents relating to the administration of the Rosary Cemetery, 1824-1974. See lists MC 71 and N/C2 for more details. These include:
    • Minutes
    • Accounts
    • Correspondence
    • Records of shareholders
    • Records of owners of grave squares

Norwich City Cemetery (Earlham Road Cemetery)

We hold the following records on microfilm:

  • Burial registers, 1855-1970. Entries give:
    • Name
    • Age
    • Occupation
    • Place of residence
    • Date of burial
    • The section of the cemetery in which the grave was situated
    • The grave number
  • Indexes, 1856-1998 - these are arranged alphabetically to the first letter of the surname only. They give the burial number and folio (page) number in the burial register and the grave number and folio in the grave book.
  • Grave books - using the section and grave numbers given by the indexes, you can find the entry in the grave book. This will list all occupants of a particular grave plot. On microfilm MF 812, there is an overall section plan of the cemetery and plans of individual sections with the plot numbers, so that the grave can be located at the cemetery.
  • Registers of stillborn children, 1928-97 - these record:
    • The date of burial
    • Parents’ names
    • Address where the birth took place
    • The section of the cemetery in which the grave was situated
    • The grave number

For more details, see the list Norwich City Records on Microform Part 2: Cemeteries Department, available in the searchroom. There is a plan of the cemetery in this list.

  • There are also plans of the cemetery, showing the locations of individual grave plots, in a black A3 folder in the microform section of the searchroom.
  • We have transcripts of cemetery inscriptions for the eastern part of the City Cemetery: see catalogue references MC 2669/32-35, 992X6.
  • We also have records relating to the administration of the cemetery, 1855-1974. See list N/CI for further details. These include:
    • Minutes
    • Records of grave ownership
    • Records of grave maintenance
    • Financial records
    • Correspondence
    • Plans