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Tales of North Brighton Cemetery Tour

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by Nadine Cresswell-Myatt (subscribe)
Freelance writer exploring Melbourne and beyond. If you enjoy the following article click on the Like button, Facebook it to your friends or subscribe. I'll update you with yummy and often free events. Like my photos? I instagram @redbagwilltravel
North Brighton Cemetery
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Those who say they wouldn't be caught dead in a cemetery are really missing out on the experience of a lifetime. There is so much of interest when you visit a graveyard such as history, symbolism and its meaning, touching and heart-warming stories and often a chance to be in beautiful tranquil environments.

If you don't like going by yourself you can always take a tour. One such tour is of the North Brighton Cemetery that dates back to 1859. It is the place to hear life stories of early pioneers and settlers, diverse religious beliefs and customs associated with symbolism cemeteries.

The entry drive is flanked by cypresses and there is a central avenue planted with Ash trees. The chapel and cemetery were established on land donated by Michael Featherstone and
it was the first burial ground in the area. Therefore, it is the final resting place of many significant residents within the district including, William Fisk and the Bagshaw and Chinner families.

Murals in cemeteries, North Brighton Cemetery
Mural near the graves of North Brighton Cemetery. Source: ABC: Ashley Walsh

On a more contemporary note, it is also the final resting place of Paul Moran a cameraman for ABC News. He covered the Gulf War in 1991 from Saudi Arabia on a freelance basis. He also covered stories on the Ayatollah Khomeini reign and reported from aboard the HMAS Manoora, which was on interdiction duty in the Gulf.

Moran was killed on March 22, 2003, by a suicide car bombing attack while covering Operation Iraqi Freedom in Sayed Sadiq, in the Kurdish area of Northern Iraq. In a touching tribute, his wife established the Paul Moran Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation that funded a children's library in Erbil, which is in the Kurdish area as well as other educational projects in the Middle East. For more information on this foundation click here.

Cemetery exploring in purple boots @cemeteryexploringinpurpleboots
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One of the most touching aspects of this cemetery is the memorial to the stillborn babies. More than 300 stillborn babies had been buried in North Brighton Cemetery - many during a period of time when such matters were not the subject of open discussion and therefore women missed out on important aspects of the healing process. Mothers had the babies taken from them and were often not allowed to name them and many gravesites for stillborns were not recorded.

One day, Amanda Rose, Holdfast Bay's Cemetery Co-ordinator, had a request from a 95-year-old Pt Augusta woman who wished to see the grave of her stillborn baby before she herself died.

Amanda thought that such women and parents needed more than just a stretch of earth to look at in their resolution of grief.

Supported by local businesses and local artists, a memorial wall was created with plaques recording the names of the babies, to help people through the grieving process.

A lovely video about this below.

North Brighton Cemetery
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The guided tours cost $7.

Upcoming tours for 2019 are on:

Sunday 10 February
Sunday 10 March

But if you are reading this at a later date make sure to check the booking link as there are sure to be future tours later in the year.

For bookings click here.

Cemetery exploring in purple boots @cemeteryexploringinpurpleboots
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301 Brighton Road, North Brighton, Adelaide, South Australia, 5048
(08) 8229 9999

North Brighton Cemetery
North Brighton Cemetery

If you are researching your family history, the Holdfast Bay History Centre can assist you in searching for grave sites in North Brighton Cemetery and in St Jude's. Please note this service is only available for historical graves up until 1940. Please contact the Adelaide Cemeteries Authority for all other searches and enquiries. There are also lists that might be useful found on this page. Click here.

North Brighton Cemetery
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Why? Cemeteries are fascinating places
When: Guided tours operate at 10:30am. See Eventbrite for dates.
Phone: (08) 8229 9999
Where: 301 Brighton Road, North Brighton
Cost: $7
Your Comment
What a well researched article, well done Nadine.
by Dave Walsh (score: 4|11307) 572 days ago
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