These memorials are decaying over time due to acid rain, rising damp and ivy growing in cracks, all of which will cause problems with the stonework.
As generations pass, surviving relatives of those buried in these fantastic plots are far removed hence the reluctance to pay for the upkeep of the memorial. Most churches and local authorities don’t have the money either.
What Can We Do?
If you’re passionate about Victorian cemeteries and you trace a family ancestor and their grave is in need of repair, please look into the costs of repair and maintenance and see if you can afford to help.
Also, there are many cemetery friend groups that can probably receive funding from the English Heritage and National Lottery to help keep them in repair. Find out if your local cemetery has a friend group and get in contact with them to see how you can help.
Death was common place for the Victorians with overcrowding and unsanitary conditions, which made diseases like cholera rife. The bible was closely adhered to with many Victorians saving up for a decent funeral so that their soul could transcend to Heaven. The wealthy spent lots of money on their funeral plot with fancy stonework of shrouded urns, angels pointing to Heaven and broken columns to symbolise death.