Hello and welcome to the new, updated and very informative, official website of the Friends of Jesmond Old Cemetery.
Just in case you hadn’t noticed, our old website ‘died’…… unfortunately (or fortunately, really!!), technology overtook the dated platform that we used for it and it just disappeared…..overnight…. meaning we have had to start again…. from scratch!! Obviously, we were quite proud of our work on the original website and we must have been doing something right as we had over 27,000 ‘hits’ during its existence – not bad for quite a niche market – but, time (and technology) waits for no-one, not even the Friends of Jesmond Old Cemetery group, so here we are, having found the cloud with the silver lining, ready to show off our brand new website.
As you will see, it is not quite the finished article and, hopefully, never will be, as we intend to keep adding to it as we go along. However, we feel there is enough ‘completed content’ within our website to warrant it being published as it is now.
In terms of what we are trying to achieve, the ‘stories’ section is our main priority; this is where the ‘residents’ of Jesmond Old Cemetery get to tell us a bit about themselves, their families, their achievements and, ultimately, their demise. There are over 25,000 people buried in Jesmond Old Cemetery, so it will be a bit of a daunting challenge to document them all, but at least we’ve made a start. On our original website, we mainly used the information provided by Alan Morgan (with his permission, of course) in his magnificent book about Jesmond Old Cemetery which, out of necessity via the printed form, was quite brief and lacking somewhat in depth and detail. Now, that is not to say that the information provided by Alan was not useful – indeed, all of his books are a treasure trove of fantastically useful knowledge and history that are a starting point for a wide range of local historians; however, the many advantages afforded by the medium of online content means that we have the luxury of unlimited ‘space’, where we can not only build on Alan’s work, but also produce our own research, providing as much context, depth and detail as we can find. Obviously, this will be an on-going project, as we amend and add profiles to the website, but this will, hopefully, entice you to return again and again to further explore what we have uncovered about our residents.
So, as you explore the ‘stories’, you will come across a number of Alan’s ‘pen portraits’ but, alongside these, you will find an increasing amount of our own in-depth biographies that will, eventually, become the gold standard profile throughout the website. For instance, if you look at Robert Amos, Thomas Pallister Barkas, Emerson Muschamp Bainbridge, Walter Runciman or William Baigent, you will see what we are endeavoring to achieve in terms of the amount and level of information we want to provide.
The ‘stories’ themselves are organized into ten categories, namely ‘Architects, Builders and Engineers’, ‘Arts, Entertainment and Literature’, ‘Brewers, Merchants and Retailers’, ‘Crime, Police and Solicitors’, ‘Maritime’, ‘Medicine’, ‘Military’, ‘Mining’, ‘Politics, Public Life and Religion’ and ‘Sports’. The categories have been chosen to help facilitate a logical, organized and structured ‘grouping’ of the wide diversity of lives lived by our residents, helping the visitor to our website more easily find who they are looking for. However, it is acknowledged that the allocation of an individual to a category is an imperfect science and that some may disagree with the decisions made but, we had to start somewhere, and we are open to being persuaded to change our minds……for a small fee!!
Moving on to other components of our website, we have a section on ‘The Friends’, which details, amongst other things, how we started, who we are, what we’ve done and what we want to do. ‘The Cemetery’ section focusses on the history of Jesmond Old Cemetery, from its antecedents, right through to the present day. It also includes a lovely section on our ‘Listed Structures and Monuments’.
So, there we have it….a brief introduction to our new website. What do you think???
Let us know your thoughts….