for those interested in the different types of buriels at key hill and warstone lane cemeteries here is a great bit of info and should help clear up any myths and maybes about how folk were buried...
A pauper was a penniless person buried by the Board of Guardians (at public expense). There are none at Key Hill or Warstone Lane, but there are several at Handsworth Cemetery. They would not usually be put into Public Graves.
Sometimes referred to as Common Graves (which were actually smaller versions). The cheapest grave available in a private cemetery such as Key Hill. The grave (at key Hill) could be as deep as 40’ and covered the area of either 2 or 4 ‘normal’ plots. The standard ‘4 Plot’ Public grave contains between 100 & 230 people, the average being closer to 200. The Grave was temporarily covered with boards or tarpaulins or occasionally a ‘tent like’ structure between burials. Each individual coffin being covered by soil after burial, although concrete was trialled at Key Hill. The grave was usually only open for 3-4 months before being completely full. A separate charge (10 Shillings) was made to engrave the name on the large headstone. Only a minority of people could afford to do this, so there are many more interred than the headstone indicates. In 1894 separate internments were £1 each. These may have been known as ‘Guinea Graves’ when the cost was increased.
This is a Public Grave but is only one plot in size, and would normally be for 3 people (usually unrelated). The Grave would usually be filled in between burials, and no Headstone would be allowed. However, at Key Hill, because of the sandy ground, these Graves can contain 20 people. They were called Common Graves due to being in ‘Common Occupation’.
A Common Grave (for 3) people cost in 1843 £0 7s 6d per Internment. By 1851Separate Entombments in Catacombs and Graves were advertised at Adults £1 5s 0d, Children £0 15s 0d.
Another term for Public Graves, or most likely, an alternate term for Family Graves.
Also called Family Graves. The ‘normal sort of Grave in the Cemetery. They can be double plots or even larger. The Standard 3 person plot cost £2 18s 0d in 1843. They could be deeper than the standard 7’ (a 20’ deep grave cost £5 14s 0d). Larger graves obviously cost more. They could be Brick lined (20’ feet deep cost £14 18s 0d!) with a flat cover stone on top, or vaulted with a brick arched roof with an opening for coffins, covered again by a flat stone. These graves would usually have Headstones, Side Rails, & footers. They could have a monument over them (Obelisk, Cross, Statue, etc). A 7’ x 3’ Gravestone cost between £1 16s 0d and £2 5s 0d. This had risen to a flat cost of £3 10s 0d by 1897.
The Catacombs are basically private storage rooms, with 4 shelves for individual coffins. The ‘room’ was then bricked up, often with a wall mounted headstone. Private Catacombs originally cost from £25 - £60. Further internments £1 10s, and a stone £2 10s.
In 1882 new Catacombs were created, whereby each coffin was enclosed by a single brick wall, and covered with stone flagging securely cemented to make it airtight. A stout door to be supplied and name, date of death and age of deceased (when ordered) to be in a uniform style. Charges were Children under 4 25s, Children 5-12 £2, Adults £3. Inscriptions 10s
Once the catacomb was completely filled, it would be closed in with a brick wall and the stone door permanently fixed in place. In 1889 prices were amended to 15s, £1, £2 and £4.
There are vaults inside the Catacombs as well as beyond them on the curved section. Single internments in vaults were reduced in 1889 from 15s to 12s and 10s.