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Burnside Monument, Brompton Cemetery

A Grade II Listed Building in Redcliffe, London

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.4873 / 51°29'14"N

Longitude: -0.1931 / 0°11'35"W

OS Eastings: 525549

OS Northings: 178027

OS Grid: TQ255780

Mapcode National: GBR 0P.T1

Mapcode Global: VHGQY.LWR7

Entry Name: Burnside Monument, Brompton Cemetery

Listing Date: 21 December 2011

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1403346

Location: Kensington and Chelsea, London, SW10

County: London

District: Kensington and Chelsea

Electoral Ward/Division: Redcliffe

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Kensington and Chelsea

Traditional County: Middlesex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater London

Church of England Parish: St Luke, South Kensington

Church of England Diocese: London

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Summary

Funerary monument to Burnside family, c.1943.

Description

MATERIALS: Grey granite.

A large memorial (approximately 1.2m wide by 1.5m high) set on a low plinth and a base with contiguous seats. The end blocks of the seats form the stops of the kerb of a ledger stone pavement to the front of the headstone; two of the slabs are inscribed 'ALLAN' and IRIS'. The headstone is carved in relief with a neo-Byzantine angel figure, its hands resting on a Latin cross. The plinth has deeply incised block capitals reading 'BURNSIDE' with the inscription on the base below commemorating Allan Eaton Meldrum Burnside (1898-1937) and his sister Margaret Allan Iris Burnside (1894-1915), children of Thomas David Meldrum Burnside (1835-1900) and Josephine Smith Eaton Burnside (1866-1943) and grandchildren of Timothy Eaton (1834-1907) and Margaret Eaton (née Beattie - 1841-1933) of Toronto, Canada.

History

Allan and Iris Burnside were the grandchildren of the founder of Eaton's, once Canada's largest chain of department stores until financial difficulties in the 1970s led to their eventual takeover by Sears Canada in 1997, and closure in 2002. Iris Burnside died aboard the Lusitania when the ship was torpedoed by a German U-boat on 7 May 1915. Her mother, Josephine, was also aboard but survived. Allan died in Paris in 1937. The memorial is believed to have been erected on Josephine's death in 1943.

Brompton Cemetery was one of the 'magnificent seven' privately-run burial grounds established in the 1830s and 1840s to relieve pressure on London's overcrowded churchyards. It was laid out in 1839-1844 to designs by the architect Benjamin B Baud, who devised a classical landscape of axial drives and vistas with rond-points at the intersections marked by mausolea or ornamental planting, the latter devised by Isaac Finnemore with advice from J C Loudon. The main Ceremonial Way culminates in a dramatic architectural ensemble recalling Bernini's piazza in front of St Peter's in Rome, with flanking colonnades curving outwards to form a Great Circle, closed at its southern end in a domed Anglican chapel (the planned Catholic and Nonconformist chapels were omitted for financial reasons). The cemetery, never a commercial success, was compulsorily purchased by the General Board of Health in the early 1850s, and has remained in state ownership ever since.

Reasons for Listing

* Design interest: a large and prominent memorial in a striking neo-Byzantine style;
* Historic interest: commemorates a victim of the sinking of the Lusitania in 1915;
* Group value: it is located within the Grade I-registered Brompton Cemetery and has group value with other listed tombs and structures nearby.

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