Cemetery historical notes.

The three cemeteries, (Newport, Carisbrooke and Barton) were established and controlled by 3 separate Burial Boards until the Local Government 1933 IW act when they came under one authority - The Newport and Gatcombe Joint Burial Board.

Carisbrooke (Mount Joy) Cemetery

Carisbrooke Cemetery was formed in 1858 at a cost of £3,000 and consisted of 5 acres – a further 3 acres were added in 1894. According to the 1898 Kelly’s directory it was under the control of a Burial Board of 10 members representing the parishes of Carisbrooke, Gatcombe and Newport  Borough – the clerk being Edward Frederick Blake and the keeper, William Matthews.

Carisbrooke Burial Board minutes - April 1858

Father Thomas Fryer requested an area for the interment of Roman Catholics; this was agreed and ‘the south western corner’ assigned.

NOTE: generally considered to be section R, but the RC burials extend into the adjacent unconsecrated section T. Other areas in the cemetery are now designated Roman Catholic; RC burials have also taken place in unconsecrated areas within all three cemeteries around Newport, the grave being ‘consecrated in the RC manner’ at the time of the burial.

Hampshire Advertiser 8th May 1858


Two interments have already taken place in these grounds, and both parties Roman Catholics. The first was Mr. Hodgett’s, a mezzo tinte engraver, who had been for some time a resident in that village; and the other, a girl named Woolf, buried from the House of Industry. We understand it is intended that the Romish Bishop of this district, and some say Cardinal Wiseman, will shortly pay a visit here, for the purpose of consecrating that portion of the grounds allotted for the burial of Roman Catholics. Mr. Robert Matthews, who was elected sexton of Carisbrooke at the Easter Vestry, is appointed Lodge-keeper of the Cemetery. We are pleased to observe the idea of the connection of the two chapels by a covered carriage road, making the whole appear as one building, is being carried out by the Chichester Town Council, who constitute the Burial Board in that city. The only objection to this picturesque Cemetery is its elevation, which will always be felt in the burials of the poor; but we would direct public attention to the advertisement (in another column) of the Messrs. Mew, of the Bugle, Newport, respecting their patent “Shillibeer,” - the only vehicle of the kind, we believe, in the Island. Its use saves much toil and inconvenience, and its compactness and commodiousness – combining the hearse and mourning coach – must call it into constant requisition.

Carisbrooke Burial Board minutes - August 1858

Sir John Simeon requested permission “to erect a stone cross in that portion of the Cemetery which is devoted to Catholic Interments”, this was agreed.

NOTE: this appears to be the cross immediately adjacent to the western end of the Countess Clare’s railed area. Before the countess’s tomb was built up above the natural ground level, the cross would probably have been more prominent.

Hampshire Advertiser - 31 July 1875

CARISBROOKE CEMETERY. - At a meeting of Carisbrooke Burial Board, on Tuesday, the subject of rececting high unsightly headstones was brought under consideration; also the practice of making holes in the mounds, and inserting jam pots containing flowers. Order were made to the effect that in future the erection of headstones above a given height will not be allowed; and that no such insertions in the mounds will be permitted.

The 'Shillibeer' ('Shelibere') Funeral Omnibus as offered in the Victorian age.

Burial Board Minutes - 11 December 1935

A further 6 acres extension to the Cememery was opened with Bishop Lovett consecrating the appropriate areas 11 December 1935. The extent of the cemetery as it is now (2018) is as it was following this extension.

The layout of the extension was designed by Messrs. Stratton and Millgate of Newport and the work carried out by Messrs. W. H. Bullock & Son.

Newport (Fairlee Road) Cemetery

Newport Cemetery was formed in 1858 at a cost of £3,000 and, in 1898, was controlled by a Burial Board of 9 members - the clerk was William Weeks, Crocker House, Crocker street; the keeper Richard Parsons.

Isle of Wight Observer 6th. November 1858.

Newport Cemetery.

The Newport Cemetery on the Fairlee Road promises to become the most interesting feature of the neighbourhood; a new footpath is now being made, corresponding with the one in King’s-field, which will be a great improvement, and afford a good promenade for visitors. The planting of the grounds is entrusted to Mr. William Wilkins, nurseryman, of this town, who has contracted to perform the work, and to supply a full collection of the choicest and best trees, shrubs, evergreen conifers, etc. The ground is in course of trenching, and appears well suited for the growth of the plantation, which in a few years will form quite an arboretum including the most new and rare specimens from all parts of the world.

Barton (St Paul’s) Cemetery

Barton Cemetery , in 1898 the cemetery consisted of an area of land to the north of St Paul’s Churchyard and was controlled by a Burial Board of 9 members - the clerk was Henry Richard Hooper, 17 Quay street, Newport .

The ‘new’ Cemetery in Halberry Lane was opened circa 1899.

Hampshire Telegraph 22nd January 1898

Newport - Proposed New Cemetery. - >On Wednesday morning Colonel Luard, R.E., Local Government Board Inspector, held a public inquiry into the application of the Joint Burial Committee of the Newport and Whippingham burial district for sanction to borrow £1,200 for purchasing and laying out as a burial ground some 1½ acres of land in Halberry-lane, Fairlee, in view of the fact that the churchyard at St. Paul’s, Barton, will be filled up in about six months’ time. Mr. Small objected to the expenditure of £40 on Bishop’s fees for consecration, but the Inspector said that if they decide to consecrate a portion it was not for him to interfere. Mr Small also suggested that there was a semblance of favour for the Church party in the division of the ground, but the Inspector did not think there was much to complain about in the matter.

(Transcribed by Roger O’Nions for the friends of Newport & Carisbrooke Cemeteries 2018)

Isle of Wight County Press 15th November 1913

Newport Town Council - The Joint Burial Committee were authorised to apply for a loan of £350 for erecting a caretaker's lodge in the Cemetery.

Isle of Wight County Press 26 December 1914

The Lych Gate.was erected at the entrance to the Cemetery as a gift of Mr. B. B. Beckingsale, of Fairlee House in memory of his wife who lies buried there. The Lych Gate was designed by Percy Stone, F.S.A., and erected by Mr. J. H. King of Blackwater.

Church Burial Grounds in Newport/Carisbrooke Area

Isle of Wight Observer, 14th. April 1855.

Closing of Burial Grounds.

"Orders have been given by the Secretary of State for the immediate closing of the old portion of the churchyard at Carisbrooke, the newly added portion to be allowed to remain open only for three years longer. We understand that the burial ground attached to the Baptist Chapel in Castlehold, Newport, and the Friends burial place on Hunnyhill, fell under similar interdict, but that on the death of any member of a family, where a vault had been constructed an opening for interment will be allowed by petitioning the proper authorities. The old portion of the Newport Burial Ground is also to be closed forthwith, and the new part on the 1st. January, 1857. The burial ground at the Roman Catholic Chapel is also to be closed at the same time."

St John's Churchyard

Burials were conducted in the St. John's churchyard from 1837 to 1940 The headstones were removed cira. 1963.