Volunteers from the Leavesden Hospital History Association (LHHA) paid an emotional visit to a cemetery near Abbots Langley recently, where they uncovered more than 350 buried gravestones.
Sixteen of the association’s members worked through the cold and wet weather on Sunday, January 12 to unearth the cremation marker stones in the East Lane Cemetery in Leavesden, which was a part of Leavesden Hospital from 1906 to 1995.
The volunteers had planned to survey the area for six months and were expecting to find around 50-or-so buried marker stones, so the group was shocked and overwhelmed to find as many as they did.
Many of the 350 names, which had not been seen the light of day for 20 to 40 years, were those of former patients and staff at the hospital.
Martin Brooks, founder of the LHHA, said: “This is something I have wanted to see done for over 12 years now.
“Being supported by and working closely with Three Rivers District Council’s Leisure Department, we have been planning this for over six months and it has all been well worth the wait and effort.
“We are finally going to have a full list of names and locations of those people who are buried in the cemetery so family members can come and pay their respects and the cemetery can be returned to the picturesque place of rest that many who worked at the hospital remember it being.”
Photo courtesy of Martin Brooks