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Reading Cemetery JAHA Heritage Open Day

Reading Old Cemetery was built in the 1840s and has been a working Cemetery ever since. The site has three grave monuments that are Grade II listed. Although no new plots are available, burials still occasionally take place on existing family owned plots. When originally built, there were three impressive buildings on the site; the Grade II listed Ornamental Arch at its entrance and two chapels built in the classical style. Unfortunately, the chapels were demolished in the 1960s, but it is possible to see the plinth of one of them and the area of where the other stood. The virtual exploration will began at the Arch and then move into the cemetery beyond, visually restoring the demolished chapels and reaching into the nooks and crannies where visitors would not normally venture. Nature has taken over at Reading Old Cemetery. Many of the original paths are extremely overgrown and, in some places, completely blocked. Our film will venture through these long forgotten routes and reconnect areas of the cemetery that have been separated for decades. The natural heritage of the site will be explored too. There are rare species of trees in the cemetery as well as a group of Muntjak deer. We hope to capture the deer on film, but will not be able to guarantee this element of the film is successful, as they are notoriously shy!

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