top of page

Midnight burials with lanterns.

Updated: Jan 2, 2023

One would think from the image below that this family are still resting in the catacombs at Key Hill Cemetery in Birmingham Jewellery Quarter, Hockley.

The memorial stone to the catacombs in Key Hill cemetery formerly known as the General Cemetery states :-

In memory of James Booth who died April 2nd, 1857 aged 51 years. Sarah Hodgkins February 8th, 1864 aged 81 years. Phillips Booth 13 December 13th 1879 aged 39 years. May Booth who died August 14th 1882 aged 40 years.

Yet, on Thursday 19 January 1899 the remains of the four people listed above were exhumed at Key Hill Cemetery, Birmingham which were under sanction of the Home Office in the presence of a police sergeant. The four hearses conveying coffins, of the four deceased members then drove to the parish churchyard in Knowle, Solihull, where the coffins were interred into a family vault, in the presence of a police sergeant, overseer and the relatives of the deceased the coffins were solemnly consigned to the grave by dim of light a lantern, a portion of the service being read by the Vicar.

Key Hill cemetery catacombs We can only assumed that Samuel Booth who was living in Knowle, Solihull, wished to have his family removed from Key Hill cemetery( non- denominational) to a Church of England church yard in Knowle, Solihull. Samuel was the brother of James Booth.

Knowle Parish Church: Image Google. Research: J. Fielding & S.Carrico. Images: R. Jones.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page