Addington Cemetery

Addington Cemetery newspaper announcement, 1858Brief History

The Addington Cemetery was established in 1858 when the Scottish Presbyterians of St Andrew’s Church purchased land for a cemetery in Selwyn Street. Although not the first cemetery in Christchurch, Addington was in fact the first “public” cemetery, “being open to all persons of any religious community” and allowing the performance of any religious service “not contrary to public decency”.

The other major cemetery at Barbadoes Street primarily provided for Anglican services, thus many of the more radical personalities, who were not prepared to conform to Anglican services, opted for the Addington Cemetery. The profits made from the purchasing of plots went towards the acquisition of sites for religious and educational purposes, the relief of the poor and provision of bursaries for the Christchurch High School (today known as Hagley High School).

The first burial took place on the 10th of November 1858. The cemetery has several persons of note buried within its grounds including activist Kate Sheppard, Christchurch Mayor Tommy Taylor and members of the pioneer family, the Deans.

Its plots were taken up over a relatively short period of time. By 1980 it was made a ‘closed cemetery’, meaning that no further burials were permitted, with the exception of certain people who own existing family plots.

In 1947 the Christchurch City Council assumed management of the cemetery.


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