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For some time we have been receiving enquiries from members living some distance from Whalley, about news of any developments at the Cemetery, and have responded on an individual basis to say that as far as we aware, there have been no significant changes since the Bishop's decision to retain the consecrated status in July 2019. We have some local members living or working near to the Cemetery and hopefully they will keep us in touch with any developments or lack of development.
6.10.2020: Mel Diack, MBE, who lives locally reports. "There appears to be nothing happening at the Cemetery, though new metal gates were installed behind the wooden boards some time ago. However, the adjoining field next to Guild House which I believe drains via pipes in the Cemetery is currently flooded, despite having new drains installed recently.
These flagstones were delivered to the Cemetery, sometime before Christmas 2020 and are positioned near to the chapels. It is presumed that these are to go on the paths in the woods at some stage.
Mel Diack MBE 29.1.2021
Mel Diack MBE reports that this notice was attached to the outside of the wooden fence, which prevents access to the Cemetery. We do not know which member or members of Geoffrey's family posted the notice and unfortunately have no way of contacting them. Mel phoned both the Lancashire Evening Telegraph and the Advertiser paper with the details and we wait to see if they will respond. He has also brought the matter to the attention of Councillors David Berryman and Ian Brown.
Geoffrey was buried in grave 46 which is the first row of RC graves, very close to the northern boundary of the Cemetery and faces the QMMH graves.
THE CEMETERY FILM
Produced by Pinac
8.4.2021: A further find of cards.
A collection of cards were recently found at the Cemetery, by Douglas Aspden, a neighbour who lives close to the site. I am presuming that these cards were placed- perhaps on the grave of the lady buried in the wicker basket by the tree/hedge, and then blown across and picked up by the contractors at the QMMH cemetery. There are a number of birthday and a single Christmas card which appear to be written to "Mum," with different messages of affection by a "Chrissie and Howard." There were also the remnants of a bunch of flowers, which may have come from this or any of the other graves. I cannot be certain that they were left for the lady in the wicker basket, but that seems most likely at the moment.
Mel Diack MBE
THE BROCKHALL HOSPITAL CEMETERY FILM
12.4 2021: After the success of the Calderstones Hospital Cemetery film, Pinac have now released a further and equally powerful film on the Brockhall Cemetery, which can be found by googling Brockhall Hospital Cemetery You Tube, which will lead you to the "The girl who escaped Brockhall Asylum," a completely different story, which the Presenter links to the Cemetery to begin his story.
Once again, Pinac had no prior contact with the Friends, and have taken their material from the website and their own research, which must have been thorough, as they have discovered facts and photographs which we were not previously aware of. Although there are a couple of minor errors in the early history of the Cemetery, the production is a very important and impressive piece of work, which for the first time in almost 30 years provides us with a valuable visual record of the Cemetery and the very different issues to those which are currently being experienced at Calderstones Cemetery.
One of our members, Kathleen Bowen has a very strong association with the Cemetery, and is particularly knowledgeable about its operation, during the time in which it was being managed by the Hospital. Kathleen remember the procedures which were followed for maintenance and points out that the moving of memorials for the convenience of the groundsmen, may have occurred in the past. Another member, Derek Bunn, also has a long association with Brockhall, having been employed there for many years, praised the accuracy and quality of the film.
Two recent photos
The Graves of the Booth Hall babies with their individual memorials and flowers provided entirely from crowd-funding donations, which were organised by Pinac and volunteers.i
Visitors to the QMMH Cemetery