St. Ann's Churchyard,
around 1687 when the parish of St Anne was formed from part of St Martin
in the Fields parish. Once as described by Walker below, now a pleasant open space
(enclosed by an extraordinarily hideous fence, presumably to keep out
undesirables) in a
busy London Street. The ground level is at shoulder height compared with
the pavement outside, which gives some indication of the number of
burials here. New memorial to Hazlitt.
Bodysnatchers with grapplers and pickaxes were apprehended here in 1806.
Five of the gang of six got away. The body of a woman and child were
found in the ground 'in a state to be carried away'. (The Times
February 20th 1806)
The church was bombed in the war and only the tower remains.
Burial place of Hazlitt (d. 1830) and Theodore Etienne, King of Corsica
½ acre. It is estimated that in this
small ground and the vaults under the church 110,240 bodies were
interred during 160 years. It was laid out by the Metropolitan Public
Gardens Association in 1892, and is maintained as a recreation ground in
very good order by the Strand District Board of Works.
ANN'S, Soho.- There is only one burying ground belonging to
this parish; it is walled in on the side next to Princes Street; close
to this wall is the bone house; rotten coffin wood and fragments of
bones are scattered about. Some graves are only partly filled up, and
left in that state, intended, probably, for paupers. The ground is very
full, and is considerably raised above its original level; it is
overlooked by houses thickly inhabited. The inhabitants of the
neighbourhood have frequently complained of the past and present
condition of this place. The numbers of dead here are immense.