Guided walks and events, 2017

 Programme Changes: Will be posted on the cemetery notice board, in our Walks & Events leaflet (which is updated at regular intervals but does not necessarily cover all changes) and on this webpage.  Or contact us for more details.

Ticketed events: All tickets (unless otherwise stated) are available from the cemetery office and sell out fast due to limited numbers.  See individual events for prices and details.

Non-Ticketed events: Just turn up – no need to book.

If no price is stated, the Friends of York Cemetery suggest a donation of £3 per non-member or, for members and children, £1.  Includes drinks and biscuits.

Walks meet at the Gatehouse, last 1 1/2 – 2 hours and finish with your drink & biscuits in the chapel.


 ‘A Feast for the Ears’

Friday 20 January – 7pm for 7.30 start

in The Chapel, York Cemetery

Enjoy music and words in the presence of the Lord Mayor and Civic Party:

Experience the verbal dexterity of speakers and wordsmiths

Clive Dawson, Anthony Day and Gillian Caldicott

Marvel at the music of                                                                                              guitarist and singer-songwriter David Breslin                                                         virtuoso cellist Frances Jones & pianist David Hammond

Welcome your very own master of ceremonies                                                          Toastmaster Helen Tait

Tickets available from:                                                                                                the cemetery office – Mon-Fri 9am – 4pm                                                        or (booking fee applies)                             reserve by phone: 01904 610578

Parking at the cemetery is limited.  Please come early on foot or by public transport if you can.  Reserved parking and an access ramp are available for disabled visitors.

All proceeds will go to support York Cemetery and York Community Energy             


Residents Festival

Sunday 29 January – 10am – 4pm

Join the Friends of York Cemetery for this annual event in the glorious cemetery grounds.

Bird Count by RSPB – watch the birds of York Cemetery feeding and record each species

Cemetery Walks – learn about the history of York Cemetery

Visit the Catacombs – take a tour under the chapel

Genealogist – available in the chapel for grave searches

Friends Information stall

Free tea/coffee and cake


York Open Studios

Friday 21 April – 6pm – 9pm

Saturdays 22nd & 29th April: 10am – 6pm

Sundays  23rd &  30th April: 11am – 5pm

Local artists showing work:

Details to follow


Monuments & Masons

– 2pm

A look at the variety of tombstones and their makers, with David Poole


RSPB Dawn Chorus Bird Walk &

Illustrated Talk


Learn about the many types of birds visiting York Cemetery with RSPB expert, Barry Bishop.

Adults £5; Children Free.  Including hot sandwich & tea/coffee.


The History of York Cemetery


Guided walk exploring the fascinating history of York Cemetery from its opening in 1837, with Sheila Bartlett.


Garden Walk


An informative yet relaxing walk around the cemetery gardens with Clive Dawson.


Garden Festival

10am – 4pm

Plant stall, cake stall and free refreshments


Moth & Insect Night


With expert David Chesmore.  Anneliese Emmans Dean also conveys the world of moths and insects in her unique and amusing way.


York Cantores – A Cappella Choir Performance

Saturday 17 June – 7.30pm


Garden Walk & Honey Bee Talk


Enjoy a tour of the cemetery gardens with Clive Dawson, then find out about the bees with Beekeeper, Tom Robinson.


A Cemetery Stroll (‘Victorian’ Section)


Interesting memorials and characters in the Victorian section and a tour of the chapel catacombs, with walk leader Roger Daniel.


Gateway Community Choir – Fundraiser for York Cemetery Trust

– 7pm

Once again the marvellous Gateway Community Choir, led by Joseph O’Neill, sing in our beautiful Pritchett Chapel for your enjoyment, with all tickets sales donated to the York Cemetery Trust to help with the upkeep of this wonderful site.


Lord Mayors Buried in the Cemetery

– 2pm

A walk visiting their gravestones and hearing their stories, with the knowledgeable David Poole.



York Early Music Festival

6pm – 7pm

For details and tickets, please see the 2016 York Early Music Festival programme at  or ring 01904 658338.

Bat Night No. 1

– 9pm   TICKETS ONLY  £3 each

Meet in the chapel for a presentation and then enjoy the guided walk observing and listening to bats. With Claire Storey.  Bring a torch!  Includes drink and biscuits.

Living History

11.30am – 1.30pm

Meeting at the Gatehouse – Two performances based on lives of people buried in the cemetery, by Fulford School Year 10 Drama Pupils.

Bat Night No. 2

– 9pm   TICKETS ONLY  £3 each

Meet in the chapel for a presentation and then enjoy the guided walk observing and listening to bats. With Claire Storey.  Bring a torch!  Includes drink and biscuits.


Brewers & Publicans in the Cemetery

– 2pm

Guided Walk.  Jenny Hawkins tells the interesting historic tales of York brewers and publicans.




A Cemetery Stroll (‘Modern’ Section)

Sunday 31 July – 2pm

Discover interesting monuments and characters buried in this area.  With walk leader Roger Daniel.


Geology in the Cemetery

Sunday 7 August – 2pm

An interesting and informative geological walk around the cemetery with Neil Bartlett.


Butterfly Walk

Sunday 14 August – 2pm   TICKETS ONLY  £3 each

Study butterflies in the cemetery’s beautiful, natural environment with Dr David Chesmore.

Includes drink and biscuits.


Tree Walk

– 2pm

Learn about the cemetery’s trees with Keris McDonald.


Victorian Miscellany

– 2pm

A very interesting guided walk with David Poole, exploring Victorians buries in the cemetery.


Industrialists in the Cemetery

– 2pm

Explore York’s industrial past with a guided walk led by Linda Slack and Christine Walmsley.


Event poster (PDF)


York Cemetery Volunteer Forum

7.30pm – Refreshments provided – Agenda available from office or via email

Why not come along to the next meeting of our volunteers forum?

Volunteers are vital to the survival of the Cemetery and people often acquire skills and make lasting friendships from volunteering. There are many ways to get involved:

Weekend Wardens

Task days (10am-2pm first Saturday of each month)

Walks & events

Promotion and publicity (distributing leaflets, posters & press releases)


Tree survey

Anytime you can spare helps to preserve & enhance your Cemetery.  For further information,


Tel: 01904 610578 or call at the Cemetery office for more information for volunteer forum meetings.


Military Heroes in the Cemetery

– 2pm

Visit the graves of military heroes and hear their stories.  Pauline Beckwith leads this guided walk.


St Crux Fundraiser

– 10am – 4pm

A day of fundraising on behalf of York Cemetery Trust at the popular church of St Crux with sales of books, bric-a-brac, food, drink and refreshments.  Come along for a warming cuppa and cake and find a bargain!



Christmas Arrangement Workshop

10am – 12 noon in the Pritchett Chapel

Hazel Hall is back again with her fun and friendly Christmas workshop.  Come along to create your own arrangement with step by step instructions from Hazel, a local florist and Chelsea Flower Show Gold Medallist.

All materials provided but please bring scissors.  £15 per person including punch & mince pies.

Tickets available from the cemetery office.


Gateway Community Choir –                       York Cemetery Trust Fundraiser

– 7.30pm

Another chance to hear the Gateway Community Choir, led by Joseph O’Neill, singing in the beautiful Pritchett Chapel, with all ticket sales donated to the York Cemetery Trust.



Annual Carol Concert

– 7.30pm (gates open 7pm)

In the beautiful grade 2* listed cemetery chapel:

Drama, traditional carols and readings, a musical performance by Quodlibet, home made mince pies and fruit punch.  A wonderful evening to get you into the Christmas spirit!  FREE