Touching inscriptions to departed pets still mark the burial spots for hundreds of beloved animal companions buried between 1881 and 1915.
Beginning with the interment of a Maltese terrier named Cherry, owned by friends of the park gatekeeper at the time, the tiny cemetery stayed open to burials until space ran out at the beginning of the 20th century. Although most of the headstones with inscriptions like “Darling Dolly – my sunbeam, my consolation, my joy” and “Prince. He asked for so little and gave so much” to the touching “In memory of our darling little Bobbit. When our lonely lives are over and our spirits from this earth shall roam, we hope he’ll be there waiting to give us a welcome home” show testimony for the Victorians’ love for their dogs and cats. There are also at least one monkey and several birds remembered here as well.
The cemetery sits inside Hyde Park’s 350 acres – which have been open to the public as parklands since 1637 – tucked away by the gatekeeper’s cottage.
Today the cemetery is managed by the Royal Parks, and is only visible through fences unless a special visit is arranged.