Altona Road Cemetery

No early picture exists of Upper Derehams Farm

Altona Road Cemetery

A hidden secret some would say
For few can tell you still today
That up upon the hillside here
They see the visit of the bier.

Once part of land of Derehams Farm
The plan was viewed with some alarm
But once the judge had intervened
A cemetery was quickly seen.

And words engraved upon each stone,
As many records now have shown,
Reveal those names from miles away
Who, seeking change, had come to stay.

The Gurney family of Upper Derehams Farm lived here before and after the First World War. Soon after the end of the war the family were asked to surrender some of their land to make way for a much needed cemetery to allow local Loudwater residents to be buried here. Not surprisingly the Gurney's were not too happy about this but their objections were over-ruled and the Altona Road Cemetery was established in the early 1920s. Visitors there today will see the many European names of families who were forced to leave their homes during the struggles of war and who sought work in the Thames Valley.
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