Life through the lens...

By ValC

Undercliffe Cemetery

Fortunately it didn't rain, and we had glimpses of the sun, but the wind was bitingly cold.
Stood amongst the grave stones, on the top of a hill, overlooking Bradford, I was chilled to the bone.
However I did enjoy the warmth and friendship of the Bus Pass Walkers. as we toured Undercliffe Cemetery, with a very knowledgeable guide.
A mixture of Victorian opulence and Gothic extravagance.
An historical treasure trove. Many of the people who made Bradford a wealthy town and one of the fastest growing in England. It grew from a population of 6000 in 1801 to 18200 in 1851.Although you can see who were the " haves" and who the  "have nots".

 Two of the newer graves were  those of Stafford Heginbotham. Former chairman of Bradford City Football Club. He died in 1995 aged 61, and his grave overlooks Valley Parade, ( BFC's ground).
The other was that of Bob Cryer. MP for Keighley, then MEP for Sheffield, and then MP for Bradford South until his death in 1994.
( His wife Ann Cryer was also an MP for Keighley)

Some people of a certain age may remember a scene from the film Billy Liar filmed in the cemetery in 1963.

The Cemetery is now looked after by the Undercliffe Cemetery Charity, and is a Grade two heritage site.

We finished off at St George's Hall. where we had lunch and a chance to get warm, before catching the bus home.
Managed to get home before the heavy rain started. A hot bath, tea and cake, and I now feel warm inside and out!
Many thanks to C. and the other BPW's for a good day out despite the weather!

Top L. View over Bradford and you can see Lister's Mill chimney.
Top. Middle.  Mausoleum of the wealthy Illingworth family. Mill owners.
In the style of an Egyptian mastaba . Sphinxes either side of the doorway.
Top R. The Barlow Memorial and a sculpture of mother and child, as his wife died in childbirth, along with the child.
Bottom Middle. View looking along the main promenade where the most wealthy were buried including 4 Mayors, see bottom left. Next to it a photo showing the volunteers hard at work clearing some of the trees and bushes which were covering some of the graves.
And of course  the hardy BPWs! middle left.

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