One of the more poignant things you can do in London is to visit the graves of the various victims of Jack the Ripper. Standing alongside their final resting places – or at least as close to those final resting places that we are able to identify given the fact that almost all the graves have been re-used – you really do feel for the plight of the poor victims and for the horror of the manner in which they died.
THE GRAVE OF MARY KELLY
In a previous article we gave directions to the grave of Mary Kelly, who is buried in St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cemetery. If you missed that article you can read it again here.
You can also combine a visit to the grave of Mary Kelly with a visit to the grave of Elizabeth Stride, who is buried in the East London Cemetery, Grange Rd, London E13 0HB.
I would suggest that if you are going to visit both graves on the same trip you begin with Mary Kelly’s grave as you can take the Central Line to Leyton Station and then follow the directions in the previous article.
GETTING TO THE EAST LONDON CEMETERY
Once you have paid your visit to Mary Kelly’s grave, retrace your footsteps back to Leyton Station and, from the bus stop on the same side of the road as the station itself, take a 69 bus (they are very regular).
The journey time between the two cemeteries is approximately 30 minutes.
You will pass through Stratford on your journey and, it must be said, the areas of East London that you will go through are not particularly inspiring.
You need to get off the bus on Grange Road, the stop being directly opposite the cemetery gates.
DIRECTIONS TO THE GRAVE
Once inside the gates, keep straight ahead towards the Celtic cross war memorial
On arrival at the memorial turn left along the path and keep ahead, following the main path as it swings round to the right.
Keep ahead along that path, passing a grey waste bin on the left.
Just after you have passed a second waste bin on the left, bear left along a gravel path and, a little way along on the left side, you will arrive at the grave of Elizabeth Stride.
NOT AS CROWDED
What is noticeable about this section of the East London Cemetery is that it is not as crowded as the main section around the chapel of remembrance at the centre of the graveyard.
Indeed, it has always struck me whenever I have visited her grave that its immediate surroundings have a distinct melancholic ambience to them
AMELIA JEFFS IS ALSO BURIED HERE
The East London Cemetery is also the burial place of murder victim Amelia Jeffs, whose body was found in the upstairs attic room of 126 Portway, on 14th February 1890, two years after the murder of Elizabeth Stride.
The cemetery is a pleasant enough spot in which to while away an hour or so once you have visited Liz Strides grave and there are also public toilets in the waiting area around the central chapel.
GETTING BACK TO LONDON
Once you have visited all that you wish to visit, exit the cemetery via the main gates and turn left along grange road. A few minutes walk along here you will come to a bus stop from which you can take the 69 bus to Stratford Station.
Once at Stratford you can then take the Central Line back to the centre of London.
ANOTHER GRAVE TO VISIT
However, if you wish to continue with your explorations of the final resting places of those who were involved with the Jack the Ripper case, you can also pay a visit to the grave of Dr Rees Ralph Llewellyn.
He was the doctor who was called to the scene of the murder of Mary Nichols – who many believe was the first victim of Jack the Ripper – in the early hours of August 31st 1888.
He is buried in Tower Hamlets Cemetery, so if you wish to visit his grave you simply need to go one stop from Stratford and get off the train at Mile End Station.
Once out of the station you can follow the directions to his grave from this article.
AN INTRIGUING DAY OUT
So, there you have directions for what, without doubt, makes for an intriguing day out in the East End of London visiting the graves of several of those whose names are so familiar to us because of their links to the Whitechapel Murders.
Although, at first glance, the distances might seem inconvenient, it’s surprising how easy it is to get to these places and visitng them really does add an extra dimension to your understanding of the ripper crimes.