Welcome to Friends of old Folkestone cemetery pages

Cheriton Road, Folkestone

Established in January 2016, the ‘Friends’ is a dedicated volunteer group with a mission to safeguard, preserve, and foster interest in the Victorian cemetery. Spanning from the initial burial in 1856 to contemporary ash interments, all grave records are meticulously documented in Burial Registers.

With approximately 15,000 graves (27,000 burials), the burial details are housed in 8 extensive registers at the District Council office, and are also now accessible online through Ancestry. Noteworthy features include 45 Commonwealth war graves, a Cross of Sacrifice, three Victoria Cross recipients, the listed Machine Gun Corps (Cavalry) memorial, and a memorial to the Grosser Kurfurst (also listed).

HOLIDAY QUIZ AND WALKS FOR CHILDREN AND ADULTS: If you want to do something different during the school holidays why not have a nice relaxing walk around the old Folkestone cemetery whilst the kids search for significant gravestones – also a chance to learn a little about local history. Click on the Link Here to download various quiz and walk papers.

The White Garden: A donation from PaversFoundation, and FHDC Ward Funding plus private donations on JustGiving have allowed us to reach our target. The JustGiving account has therefore been closed. And after a small event the White Garden interpretation panel was unveiled (Interpretation panel unveiled, the progress of the White Garden)

Grave Stories of Murder, Mystery & Misfortune: Uncovering real stories from the Old Folkestone Cemetery. Just published – Out Now – a book about some of the amazing and interesting characters in the old Folkestone cemetery – available as paperback, hardback and ebook on Amazon. More Here

Folkestone Timeline

  • c8,000 BC  Land bridge to the Continent breached at end of last ice age
  • c800 BC  Quernstone production from local greensand sold over much of the known world for grinding corn by hand gets underway and continues for over 2,000 years
  • 630AD  St Eanswythe, daughter of King of Kent, builds the first nunnery in England in The Bayle overlooking the Continent, supplied by water running in a contour aqueduct from the hills behind the town.   Folkestone briefly the capital of Kent and England
  • 1339 French Fleet attack Folkestone and Dover
  • 1629 Folkestone obtained a license to build a port
  • 1790s-1815  Supply point for Napoleonic wars. Smuggling endemic.  Retiring officers make it an important residential area thereafter
  • 1794 Shorncliffe Camp established
  • 1820  Decimus Burton lays out The Leas for the Earl of Radnor
  • 1843  Railway from London opens
  • 1851 The population of Folkestone according to the census was 6,726
  • 1878 The sinking of the Grosser Kurfurst taking 284 of her crew with her
  • 1891 The full-rigged ship Benvenue sank off Sandgate
  • 1901-1910  King Edward VII and friends patronise the town
  • 1914 -18 WW1 the Great War
  • 1917 the great Folkestone air raid (Gotha bombing raid)
  • 1918-19 Influenza Pandemic – killed more people than the Great War.
  • 1939-45 WW2 Second World War
  • 1979  Motorway opens.
  • 1987 5,500-ton Sealink passenger ferry Hengist beached in the Great Storm
  • 1993  Channel Tunnel opens.
  • 2009  High-Speed Train service opens – London in 50 minutes