London Road Cemetery:
Paxton's Arboretum

Overview

Designed by famous architect Joseph Paxton, London Road Cemetery is an early example of the 19th century ‘garden cemetery’ movement, developed not only as a burial site but also as place of natural beauty for the people of Coventry to enjoy.

Appointed in 1845, Paxton incorporated the hilly layout of the former quarry the site sits on into his design, and brought in a range of exotic trees from abroad. He also commissioned two chapels: a Nonconformist chapel designed to look like a classical temple and an Anglican Chapel in a Norman style.

Those buried in the cemetery include most of the city’s Victorian pioneers of transport, especially in the emerging bicycle and car industries. There are also many impressive monuments, including one at the main entrance dedicated to Joseph Paxton himself, designed by Joseph Goddard.

Thanks to National Lottery players, Historic Coventry Trust and Coventry City Council have completed a restoration project in the cemetery funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the National Lottery Community Fund. The Anglican Chapel, the raised promenade and the old cemetery entrance have all been restored and new interpretation has been installed to tell the stories of site’s residents and natural heritage.

Initial repair works have now begun at the Nonconformist chapel (funded by Historic England), in-advance of works to find a new use for the building.

What's on at London Road Cemetery

Creating acrostics
Sun 26 May

Creating acrostics

Charterhouse, Sun 26 May | 11am - 12pm

In this informal writing session, we’ll put the best describing words we can think of into one fabulously fun poem. Suitable for all ages and abilities.

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Shape poetry workshop, Anglican Chapel
Sat 8 June

Shape poetry workshop, Anglican Chapel

Anglican Chapel, London Road Cemetery, CV1 2JT, Sat 8 June | 11am - 12pm

 

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Joseph Paxton Memorial Day
Sat 8 June

Joseph Paxton Memorial Day

London Road Cemetery: Paxton’s Arboretum, Sat 8 June | 11am – 4pm

Join us for poetry, tours and singing in memory of Joseph Paxton – architect of London Road Cemetery: Paxton’s Arboretum. Paxton died on 8 June 1865 and is buried in Edensor, Derbyshire, and has a memorial in London Road Cemetery.  Come and find out more about the creator of this tranquil space.

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Paxton Arboretum anniversary tour
Sat 8 June 2024

Paxton Arboretum anniversary tour

Anglican Chapel and London Road Cemetery , Sat 8 June 2024 | 2pm - 4pm

Introductory talk by Peter Walters, Coventry historian, tour of the cemetery with one of our experienced volunteers and a performance by Heart of England Companion Voices and refreshments in the Anglican Chapel

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Tomb tales – meet London Road Cemetery residents
Sat 6 July 2024

Tomb tales – meet London Road Cemetery residents

Anglican Chapel and London Road Cemetery , Sat 6 July 2024 | 2pm - 4.30pm

In the 1860s Coventry was in crisis due to the lifting of import duties on goods from France – suddenly Coventry’s long-standing ribbon industry was challenged by imported ribbons from France. Our  researchers will look at how some Coventrians reacted to situation, finding new opportunities and supporting distressed families.

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Tubular Bells + Dark Side of the Moon
Fri 26 July

Tubular Bells + Dark Side of the Moon

London Road Cemetery: Paxton’s Arboretum, Fri 26 July | 7pm - 9.30pm

Two all-time classics of British rock music, Mike Oldfield’s “TUBULAR BELLS” and Pink Floyd’s “DARK SIDE OF THE MOON” just celebrated their 50th anniversary.

Now music technology expert Mark Jenkins performs striking new all-synthesizer arrangements of both albums, accompanied by state of the art computer graphic and AI projections and wonderful vocal performances, in the spectacular setting of London Road Cemetery’s Anglican Chapel.

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Tree trail

Explore the cemetery’s natural heritage

Tree trail

Meet the residents

Discover the stories of the cemetery

Meet the residents trail

Find us

Sat Nav Destination: CV1 2JT

Find us on Google Maps

Parking

Visitors arriving by car should park in the Charterhouse car park and enter the cemetery through the carriageway entrance.

Funders

Made possible with Heritage Fund Community Fund Coventry City Council

Venue hire

The Anglican Chapel in London Road Cemetery is available for private and corporate hire. The space can be booked for daytime and/or evening events.

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Stay with us

Stay in some of the West Midlands’ most important historic buildings nearby. Spend the night in a fairy-tale medieval gatehouse, or one of four gorgeous timber-framed cottages right in the city centre.

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Contact us

To contact the team at Historic Coventry Trust please fill in the contact form below.

    Get involved

    Come and get involved. Support us to give a future to the city’s heritage by joining our volunteer team, or by donating online.

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