The General Cemetery in the City of Sheffield, England opened in 1836 and closed for burial in 1978.
It was the principal cemetery in Victorian Sheffield with over 87,000 burials. Today it is a listed Landscape (Grade II*) on the English Heritage National Register of Historic Parks and Gardens. It is also a Local Nature Reserve. It is owned by the City of Sheffield and managed on behalf the city by a local community group, the Sheffield General Cemetery Trust.
Some Key Historical facts
- The cemetery, with its Greek Doric and Egyptian style buildings, was designed by Sheffield architect Samuel Worth (1779–1870) on the site of a former quarry.
- The first burial was of Mary Ann Fish, a victim of tuberculosis.
- An Anglican cemetery with a chapel designed by William Flockton and a landscape laid out by Robert Marnock, was consecrated alongside the Nonconformist cemetery in 1846—the wall that divided the unconsecrated and consecrated ground can still be seen today.
- It also holds the largest single grave plot in the country, holding the bodies of 96 poor residents.
- several high-profile Victorian businessmen, including George Bassett, the sweet manufacturer are buried here.
- William Parker’s family memorial is one of the more prominent Grade II listed monuments here, The website ‘flickeringlamps.com’ recounts the unfortunate tale of Parker’s wife, Katherine. ‘William Parker died intestate, meaning that he had no will…Although according to the laws of the time, Parker’s wife was not able to legally own property, it fell upon Katherine to manage her late husband’s affairs and oversee the winding up of his business. As well as this, Katherine was left to bring up the couple’s five children alone. Poor Katherine died by suicide in 1844, and the inquest into her death noted that she had had ‘immense anxieties and much to manage.’’
Is it Haunted?
There isnt any historical hauntings documented I can find but…..
I remember visiting here a few years ago on Christmas Eve, I remember one instance springing to mind when our team member, Chrissie Rising stated she felt a man nearby called ‘Tom’, she had stood round for several minutes detailing what this man looked like and we decided to walk a little further on and we managed to catch sight of a grave where we next stood where the name ‘Thomas’ was on the graves which was facing us.
We had a very quiet evening but was a nice haunted walk out.
Roll on a few years and I see that Retford Ghost Hunters had investigated here and they captured what appeared to look like a lady, which I now know they felt that the lady was William Parkers wife, Katherine.
I hadn’t planned a investigation here, but we ended up here a few weeks after Retford Ghost Hunters had visited. We couldn’t get access into the location we wanted to visit so this was nearby and we decided it would be great for a Live walk. I did a quick google search and remembered the ghostly image of the lady I had seen on Retford Ghost Hunters page, but didnt really have time to delve anymore as we was running late for our live investigation.
We started our walk and had the spirit box going. Near the chapel is a path and here is where Chrissie had previously said she felt a male was here named Tom. While here i was picking up strongly a man in hood was present, who may be a monk. A strange thing happened on the Facebook Live we was doing down the path appeared as if a hooded figure was stood there but visually we couldnt see it. We walked down the path and it eventually disappeared.
I could not understand why I was picking up on a monk because I didnt think that a priory was or ever was nearby.
However, after our investigation, team member Gina Marshall looked at old maps of the area and a priory was at one point actually located nearby. Only one street up.
Here is the map showing this.
I also felt a lady present but felt the male much more. However, after our investigation, a viewer caught what appears to look like a lady stood in front of me. This funnily enough looks very similar to the image caught by Retford Ghost Hunters. Now, it was a cold night it could be breath but look how it is shaped and there is a certain area blacked out.
There is a theory, that A fellow investigator, John Williams informed me of and that is your breath vapour could act as source to form in or as it passes through act as a aid to help you see them abit like when you go to a nightclub there is lasers shining through but only when a fog machine releases steam do you see the laser formations. It a theory to be considered I think.
We also had Abbey come through and asked how did they die it said by hanging. It would seem a women was also showing some intelligent replies.
Viewers also seen a black mass on the path we conducted the spirit box, we couldnt visually see this at the time but looking through the camera we could. We walked to the bottom of the path shown the area where the black mass was seen but couldn’t see what could have possibly created.
So would I say sheffield general cemetery is haunted, I would say it most definitely has something about it!
Charlene Lowe Kemp & Aimee Sirdifield
Pictures by Simon Wilson