Holy Ascension Church was consecrated in October 1838 and the first burials in the churchyard took place the following year. The original churchyard has been extended twice in the intervening years and is again almost full with most burials now taking place in the adjacent “civic” cemetery operated by Settle Town Council.
The churchyard consists of three connected burial grounds, known locally, and in the registers, as the “Ancient”, “Old” and “New” Grounds. It is a cherished part of our church and is lovingly maintained throughout the year by a dedicated team of volunteers.
The Family History Group of Settle District U3A, under the leadership of Sarah Lister, has carried out extensive research into all the burials since 1839. Their researches have revealed some fascinating facts about the lives of local families over the last two centuries, including one of the sadder aspects of 19th century life – the high infant mortality rate.
Sarah’s labour of love has also resulted in the publication of two books, so far:
Most of our church burial records are now accessible on-line, supplemented by additional information gleaned from the U3A Graveyard Project. To search in the on-line database, just click here or on the plan.
As mentioned above there is also an adjacent “Civic” cemetery to the north, with a smaller raised area for interment of ashes to the east of the New Ground. Both of these came into service in 1999 and are administered and maintained by Settle Town Council.
If you need further help with your search, please contact Rev Julie on 01729 825955. Unfortunately, a dedicated search of the registers may be chargeable, see below:
Although a wide variety of shapes and sizes of gravestones and markers can be seen in the older parts of the churchyard, in more recent years health and safety and other considerations have led to the introduction by the diocese of Graveyard Regulations which now set specific limits on the size and style of permitted memorials. If you are thinking about adding a headstone to a new or existing grave please do contact Rev Julie (01729 825955) to discuss your ideas.