Part of the row of family vaults set against the upper wall of Cowgate Cemetery on the lower slopes of Dover's Western Heights.
Click to see an interior view of a vault (second from left in the above photo).
Above the flint wall are the burial pits where victims of the Black Death were interred.
Cowgate Cemetery has been redesignated a Nature Reserve and I'll be posting more info anon.
Abridged extracts from the plaque just inside the main (northern) entrance:
Dover's Cowgate Cemetery is named after the medieval gate which allowed townspeople to graze their animals on the lower slopes of the Western Heights.
The land, over two acres in extent, was donated by William Mowll and consecrated in 1835 by the Archbishop of Canterbury as an extension to the Parish churchyard.
The layout of the cemetery is attributed to Stephen Geary, the architect who designed London's Highgate Cemetery.
In 1990 the Wildlife Conservation Community Program (WCCP) discovered a small population of the Garden Dormouse (Eliomys quercinus) living in the cemetery. The Garden Dormouse is not 'officially' recorded as living in Britain.
Click on the 'Cowgate' tag for more images/photos.
Out of shot and to the left of this photo, on the southern edge of Cowgate Cemetery, is a pathway leading to the "64 Steps", above which is the south-eastern entrance to the Drop redoubt, part of Dover's Napoleonic defenses embedded on the Western Heights.
Between the pathway and the cliffs above Snargate Street lies the Pilot's Meadow allotments.
In 1852, Pilot's Meadow was still a meadow and it was here that Charles Dickens used to relax as he continued to write "Bleak House" during his stay in Dover. See the Dover: Indian Mutiny, Charles Dickens, Roman Empire photo for more information.
Part of the Images of Dover website.
Click to see a YouTube video of Cowgate Cemetery (part of which shows the exterior of the 'empty coffin' vault).
John Latter / Jorolat
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The Images of Dover Website.
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Photo taken in Dover, Kent, UK
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