THCP has something for everyone. It’s one of London’s “Magnificent Seven” cemeteries. It opened in 1841 and closed for burials in 1966. It then became a public park, owned first by the GLC and since 1986 by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Since 1986 two adjoining areas of land, never part of the cemetery. The Greenlink joins it to Mile End Park. If you’re a person who is put off by the very word “cemetery”, come and explore the Greenlink and Scrapyard Meadow. In summer the Meadow has more butterflies than anywhere for miles around. Maybe you’ll then venture into the old cemetery, a place of woodlands, meadows and ponds, as well as of the gravestones, which are beautiful in their gentle decay, and memorable for the stories of personal, local and global history they can reveal.
The main entrance is in Southern Grove, E3, five minutes walk from Mile End. It’s open every day from 7.30am to dusk, and pedestrian side gates are always open.
The Friends of the Park were formed in 1990 and have, in partnership with LBTH, gradually enlarged their responsibilities, and now they are responsible for almost everything in the Park. This includes running a very full community events programme, which involves regular guided walks, helping with recording gravestone inscriptions and subsequently connecting them to other records, conservation volunteering, a monthly children’s nature club, green woodworking, and wild food days. These events are advertised on the Friends’ website and Facebook and Twitter pages.