What lies beneath: 16,000 bodies buried in All Saints Park

  • All Saints Park was previously a cemetery where 16,000 bodies were buried
  • It was converted into a children's park in 1935

Anybody taking a stroll through All Saints Park would be more than a little surprised to find they were walking on a site where 16,000 bodies lay buried.

Students at Manchester Metropolitan who were asked had no idea that the park was previously a cemetery from 1820 to 1856, and an online exhibition will enable people to learn more about the history of the burial ground.

Grace Elizabeth, 19, a psychology student at MMU, said “I always hang out with my friends at the park and had no idea that so many dead bodies lie beneath, and it’s quite interesting to know that”.

Li Wei, 22, another student said “It’s quite interesting to know that this park was a cemetery before, you wouldn’t ever realise but then again most of the world is a cemetery.’’

Michala Hulme, lecturer in history at MMU said “By the end of the nineteenth century the burial ground was in a state of disrepair and neglect with sunken graves, broken headstones, flooding and debris from Oxford Road scattered across the ground”

 “At the start of the following century, calls were made to the council to find an alternate use for the burial ground. Seen as a valuable open space in a built-up city, it was proposed that it should be converted into a children’s park.

The park actually didn’t officially open until 25 years later and is now a garden part of the Manchester Metropolitan campus.