By the early 1890’s Godalming’s first publicly operated cemetery located in the north of the town was fast filling up so it was decided to open a second cemetery. From a shortlist of 5 possible sites the largest, comprising of 20 acres on a hilltop to the south of the town off Eashing Lane, was chosen and the land was purchased in 1893 for £2,000.
The Joint Burial Committee borrowed £5,000 to purchase the land, construct the buildings and set out a cemetery with 20,000 grave spaces. The first burial took place on 15 June 1900, at the then burial rate it was estimated that Eashing Cemetery would be available for 100 years.
Originally the cemetery was not the same shape and layout as it is now. During the 1930’s, in order to allow new housing to be built on Ockford Ridge, the Joint Burial Committee conducted a land swap with the council. This land swap left the original cemetery lodge outside of the cemetery and the entrance to the cemetery now off of Franklyn Road instead of Eashing Lane.
With the original cemetery lodge now outside of the cemetery, in 1931 the Joint Burial Committee built a new house at the relocated entrance to the cemetery. However, over the years this new lodge fell into disrepair, so in 2007 the Joint Burial Committee decided to refurbish it. As part of the redevelopment two new homes, as well as a new cemetery wall, railings and gate entrance, were constructed. The project was completed in 2009 when the then Mayor of Godalming opened the refurbished lodge. Present at the ceremony was the daughter-in-law of Mr Thomas Steele who, in 1931, was the first Cemetery Keeper to live in the ‘New’ Lodge; his grave can be found in Eashing Cemetery.
The Joint Burial Committee continues to invest in the development and maintenance of Eashing Cemetery and in 2009 created the cemetery’s Natural Burial Area and has done much improvement work to the cemetery grounds and its buildings. Although in 1900 it was believed that the cemetery would be available for 100 years, the availability of alternatives to burial, such as cremation, has resulted in a marked reduction in the rate of burials in all cemeteries, not just Godalming’s. It is now believed that Eashing Cemetery may well still be open to burials at the end of this century.
If you would like to purchase a burial plot or find out more about the burial options in Eashing Cemetery please complete the enquiry form below.