Let me take you by the hand and accompany you on a walk through the English Cemetery of Malaga.
I didn’t know how to organize the photos. So in the end I decided I’d just put them in chronological order, showing you the same things you would see if you were actually to visit the cemetery for yourself, in the same order you would see them.
This is the guardhouse, at the entrance, which as you can see was built in 1856.
The English Cemetery got started in 1830 when William Mark, the British consul in Malaga at the time, agonized while watching scenes of British citizens being buried on the seashore in the middle of the night because, at that time, only Catholic people were allowed holy burials on consecrated ground. He hustled and pleaded and was finally granted an extensive terrain which he could use as a cemetery.
This is a water pump at the entrance, just in front of the guardhouse. We’re not too sure why it is here, especially since it is rusted. I assume that it would have been used, in those days before modern plumbing and water hoses, to water the plants and flowers.
This is the main path as you walk in, that leads right into the cemetery.
The English cemetery became very popular, because then as now, many Brits were living in Malaga, as well as non-Catholics from other countries, and the new English Cemetery soon became “home” to a large number of tombstones (as well as, of course, the people buried underneath these tombstones).
These are some of the larger tombstones for people whose families could afford large tombstones. I know that William Mark, the British consul, is of course also buried in this cemetery which he himself founded. I did take a photo of his (very large) tombstone. But I ended up with so many photos of large tombstones that I don’t know which one was his. I don’t believe it is any of these, however.
The cemetery started growing and today, in addition to the burial grounds themselves, we can also enjoy the beauty of a guardhouse, an Anglican Church and a botanical garden with unusual species of plants.
I have always loved angel tombstones and angel statues. However in this cemetery there was only one. It’s an unusual angel statue though, with an unusual pose.
These plaques are lovely, loving homages to the memories of loved ones. I’m not too sure what they are, though. I don’t know whether they are niches, or just commemorative plaques.
The English Cemetery is on Avenida Pries number 1. You have to take the road (the interior road, not the seaside road) as if going to El Palo, if you are driving from the centre of Malaga. It’s on that same road, on the left-hand side if you are facing El Palo. It’s not far after the bullring.
Or you can take a bus. Numbers 3 and 11 drop you off right in front.
This section of the cemetery is dedicated to war heroes who died in Spain, all of whom, of course, are young. Young men, in fact. In spite of women’s desires to help in war efforts, I didn’t see any women’s tombs in this section.
The English Cemetery is only open to the public in the mornings, seven days a week (closes one hour earlier on Sundays). It used to be free to enter, although they welcomed donations, but now there is a small fee. I don’t remember exactly how much but it’s not expensive, perhaps 2 euros for children and 3 euros for adults.
We’re not too sure what happened to these broken tombstones here. We can only assume that they aren’t cared for because the people who planted them here are themselves buried here now. (They’re almost two centuries old after all.)
English people aren’t the only ones buried here, since the cemetery opens its doors to all non-Catholics wishing a decent burial in Malaga.
“Blessed are the dead, they rest from their labour and their works (what they have accomplished in life) follow them.”
I did want to save the saddest section for the end: the Children’s Cemetery. There were many tombstones here, especially since before the era of vaccinations and acetaminophen (paracetamol here in Spain) little ones died from common infectious illnesses and fevers that are easily treated today. I took photos of many of them, but in the end I’m only including these tombstones, belonging to twin babies, a boy and a girl, who died from an infectious illness. Fortunately, we don’t seem to need to grieve for the passing of Protestant children since the year 1831 (the date on the last children’s tombstone).
What visit to a cemetery would be complete without a glimpse of the resident cat?
If you enjoyed this post (I really hope you do!), maybe you will also like: