Highgate Cemetery East

Swain’s Lane Highgate London N6 6PJ

The eastern half of Highgate Cemetery is a little neater and a little newer than the west side: here you can wander at your own pace amidst some of the most famous graves in London. The 20-hectare wooded site was opened in 1854 to cope with demand to join the Victorian Valhalla across the road – a tunnel beneath Swain’s Lane connected the new ground with a chapel in the west side, so coffins could descend by lift and remain on cemetery ground for their passage to the other half of the cemetery. Within three decades it had received its most celebrated tenant, Karl Marx (1883), whose grave remains one of the most visited in London (and never mind the irony that the father of Communism has ended up in one of the most expensive graveyards in Britain). Other famous names include writers George Eliot and Douglas Adams, actor Sir Ralph Richardson, and, more recently, Malcolm McLaren, the godfather of punk.

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