There is a story here. I mean to find it someday. For now, just give this haunting little bit of history a good long read.
Halfway along Stoke Newington Church Street is a rift. A lost world of leaf, iron and stone; a crouching, brooding interruption in the row of high-end bakeries, fashionable cafes and designer home-ware shops:
Abney Park Cemetery.
One of the ‘Magnificent Seven’ garden cemeteries built when Victorian London was too full of the dead, Abney Park’s garden element has, over the years, assumed feral dominion over the dwindling numbers of burials. And the graveyard’s dark, knotted pathways and strange, ivy-ridden desire lines have come to acquire a reputation for danger.
Recent council ‘clean-up’ operations have tried to address this. But, when it comes to the advanced woodland ecology, at least, the authorities are fighting a losing battle.
Beneath the wild-turned trees that spread in every direction from the ruined chapel at the cemetery’s heart, worried by creepers, slowly crushed by roots, lie forgotten numbers of graves.
One of them, maybe, belongs to…
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