Fast Search

You are Here: Home / Ouseburn, Ballast Hills Graveyard

Tyne and Wear HER(1597): Ouseburn, Ballast Hills Graveyard - Details

Back to Search Results



Ouseburn, Ballast Hills Graveyard



Religious Ritual and Funerary

Funerary Site


Post Medieval



Ballast Hills Graveyard was the most important non-conformist burial ground in Newcastle. The origins of the burial ground lay in the influx of foreign and Scottish families into the area in the early and mid 17th century. Many European Protestants settled in the St. Lawrence area of Newcastle, and using materials from the ballast heaps, established glasshouses. Many of these immigrants adopted Quakerism. Further, many Scotsmen also came into Newcastle in the 17th century and 18th century, and being Presbyterians, they too did not wish to bury their dead in Anglican burial grounds. This was also the case with Baptists, Independents and Methodists in the latter half of the 18th century. Burials probably started here as early as the plague year of 1609 and the use of the land for this purpose was increased in the later plague-ridden years of 1625, 1636 and 1665. Indeed this site is often referred to as "Plaguey Fields". A letter in the Newcastle Courant on March 12th 1825 said that between 1818 to 1824 there were more funerals at the Ballast Hills than in all the parochial churchyards of Newcastle together. Enlargement of the site began in 1827. The graveyard fell out of use in 1853/4, after the cholera epidemic. In 1930 the site was laid out as a playground, and remains an open space; the remaining tombstones (some laid flat) have suffered erosion and wear but many are still decipherable. LOCAL LIST




<< HER 1597 >> I. Ayris, Ouseburn Heritage I. Ayris, 1989, Ballast Hills Graveyard, Ouseburn; Thomas Oliver, 1844, Historical and Descriptive Reference to the Public Buildings on the Plan of the Borough of Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead; Alan Morgan, 2004, Beyond the Grave - Exploring Newcastle's Burial Grounds, pages 129-132

Back to Search Results