Lillington's churchyard provides a tranquil green space in the heart of Lillington. The churchyard has two parts: the upper 'old' churchyard adjacent to the church, and the 'new' churchyard which was opened in 1932.
There are three entrances to the old churchyard: from Vicarage Road with a slope up from the pavement; at the corner of Church Lane and Vicarage Road with one step up; and from Church Lane where there is a lychgate and a level entrance. The latter is the most suitable for disabled set-down and access, although there is a gentle gradient up to the church and the distance is a little longer.
The Compton Gateway
The Compton Gateway links the old and new churchyards. It is so named as it is believed to be a rare example of the work of Mary Fraser-Tytler, leader of the Compton Potters' Arts Guild. It is built of terracotta and iron. The base of the south pillar is stamped 'Potters Arts Guild Compton Guildford'. The Gateway is dedicated to the memory of Ronald Irwin MA DSO MC, vicar of Lillington 1922 - 1927, later first archdeacon of Dorking, who died in 1930.
Wildflowers and Wildlife
From the carpets of snowdrops to daffodils and cherry blossom, there is always something to see in the winter and springtime. Of particular note are the wild primroses, which appear across swathes of the old churchyard, adorning monuments and lining the footpath.
Depending on when you visit, you will also find bluebells, harebells, lesser celandines, blue and white wood anemones, saxifrage, speedwell, ground elder, narcissi and others besides. Care is taken to preserve the wildfower areas. As well as the flowers, you might well see foxes, or at least their tracks in the winter snow. Wild birds are encouraged with nest boxes and seed feeders.
Monuments and Memorials
Early twentieth century photographs show that the churchyard was very crowded indeed. Many gravestones in the old churchyard were moved to the south side in 1984/85, creating the space we see today. However, no interments were moved and there are records of all burial plots. The churchyard is closed to new burials except under specific circumstances. Click here for a leaflet concerning burials, interment of ashes, headstones and grave maintenance.
We also have the grave of Alexander Lodge, third son of Sir Oliver Lodge FRS. With his brother Brodie he set up Lodge Bros to develop and produce spark plugs originally invented by his father. He lived next to the churchyard in the house he built called Brampton, and wished to be buried at the far end of the new churchyard, as close as possible to his own garden.
Let us know of your stories about the lives of those buried here.
The War Memorial
Lillington's War Memorial, dedicated in 1920, stands by the west end of the church. Beside it are the lists of the fallen in two World Wars. Forty three Lillington men are named there. Mouseover the picture of either list of names, right-click + save to get a high resolution image of the inscriptions.
Lillington Local History Group are collecting family memories of World War One. Contact chairman Graham Cooper.