The Columbarium  
 

The Columbarium

The Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

Surrey Historic Buildings Trust (SHBT) logo

The Society has employed Mr John Deal - an architectural consultant and conservation expert - to compile reports on the current state of the Drake mausoleum and the Columbarium. Mr Deal was also requested to recommend appropriate remedial work to prevent any further deterioration to these mausoleums.

Mr Deal's report outlines the immediate work that is required to repair the roof and guttering to help keep water out of this structure. The cost of this is estimated at £7,243 which the Society needs to raise urgently in order to proceed with this work.

To date the Society has been awarded a £2,000 grant from the Surrey Historic Buildings Trust. Now that this has been raised, work has commenced!

Fractured stone at the base of the dome of the Columbarium, Brookwood CemeteryThe Columbarium is the largest mausoleum in the cemetery.

It was commissioned by the 5th Earl Cadogan (1840-1915) in the early 1880s. Unused, he decided to sell it back to the London Necropolis Company in 1910. Shortly afterwards the company converted into a "columbarium" - a building for the reception of funerary urns.

 

 Fractured stone at the base of the dome

 

 

The following description is taken from the information supporting the designation of this building as a Grade II structure (23 July 2004):

"Designer unknown. Portland stone.

"DESCRIPTION: a cruciform building, with central cross-capped dome. The east face is pedimented, carried on paired coupled Doric columns: the tympanum is inscribed COLUMBARIVM. The steps lead to a doorway (blocked with breeze blocks in 2003). The curved quadrant walls have channelled rustication, with rectangular fielded panels above, while the other three arms terminate in paired pilasters. Interior not inspected, believed to have a gallery at ground level and steps leading down to the vault.

"HISTORY: this structure was originally intended to serve as the mausoleum of the 5th Earl Cadogan (1840-1915): he sold it to the London Necropolis Company in 1910 for £200. The term columbarium (from the Latin for dovecote), refers to a building containing niches for depositing caskets of ashes. This is the largest mausoleum in the cemetery, and is an elegant classical example of the type with an unusual history."

Photographs © The Brookwood Cemetery Society and John Deal


 
 

Restoration of the Columbarium: Phase I - Stonework (August-September 2009)

Scaffolding surrounding the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

Surrey Historic Buildings Trust (SHBT) logo

(Above) Scaffolding surrounding the Columbarium, early September 2009

This page provides a photographic record of the repairs to the roof of this attractive Grade II listed structure. Postcards are available of the Columbarium - see our publications pages.

Work on the Columbarium started at during the week of 24 August 2009, with the erection of scaffolding. This will allow Chris Anstey, our mason, to work safely at roof level.

His first task was to remove the temporary plastic sheeting and boards, placed there by Erkin Guney (Managing Director of Brookwood Cemetery), as temporary protection.

Vegetation forcing slabs apart on the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 Vegetation forcing roof slabs apart on the roof of the Columbarium, before restoration work started.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following preparatory work, the next stage was to lift off most of the roof slabs and parts of the pediment to remove the vegetation beneath them. This revealed more damage than anticipated to the roof, along with some sections of the gutter and cornice.

 

Roof of the Columbarium 1

Roof of the Columbarium 2

Photographs of the roof at the rear of the Columbarium showing brick over concrete construction. The slabs have been lifted so that vegetation can be removed. Note the base of the dome at the top of the right hand photograph.

Parts of the pediment are cracked and will need to be drilled and pinned. The apex of the pediment has slipped forwards and will also need to be drilled and pinned in order to secure this to the masonry below.

Pediment of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 

 photograph showing the corner of the pediment and evidence of cracked stonework.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The missing lenses in the dome will be replaced with mesh to restrict access by birds or other creatures, and to facilitate air flow into the structure.

The masonry work was completed during September, after which the roofing contractors, A.E. Hughes, moved on-site. Their work is recorded here.

 

Photographs © The Brookwood Cemetery Society and John Deal


 
 

Restoration of the Columbarium: Phase II - The Roof (September - October 2009)

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

Surrey Historic Buildings Trust (SHBT) logo

 Replacement roof on the Columbarium showing abutment with the pediment, October 2009

This page provides a photographic record of the repairs to the roof of this attractive Grade II listed structure. Postcards are available of the Columbarium - see our publications pages.

Work on the Columbarium started at during the week of 24 August 2009 (see separate page). This page records the work of the roofing contractors, A E Hughes & Son.

After the completion of the stonework, A E Hughes moved on site to construct a new roof covering over the stonework. There was evidence of lead flashing, long since stolen and removed. The new ply covering is shown in the accompanying photographs prior to it being covered with roofing felt.

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 Detail showing the abutment with the dome, which also shows one of the lenses in the dome.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 Photograph showing the external curve and overhang to ensure rainwater falls into the stone gutter (part of which is shown here).

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 

 

 photograph showing the external trim and drip prior to the ply being covered with roofing felt.

 

 

 

Although the main work to the roof was completed in October 2009, further attention was required to the gutters. Due to the bad weather at the beginning of 2010, this work was not finally competed until March 2010.

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 

 

 Photograph showing one of the replacement down pipes to the Columbarium. Note the evidence of water damage to the wall on this side of the building, partly caused by the theft of the original metal down pipe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Repairs to the roof of the Columbarium, Brookwood Cemetery

 

 

 

 

 This photograph shows the extent of damage to the stone gutter on the other side of the building. Note the replacement guttering in place and the evidence of water damage to the wall beneath.

 

 

 

 

Photographs © The Brookwood Cemetery Society and John Deal

 

 
           
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This site was last updated 19-08-17 © The Brookwood Cemetery Society