Information about Selwyn cemeteries, their locations, plots, and history.

Bishop's Corner Cemetery

This site was first used for burials in 1872. A Methodist church had been built here, but was shifted to Southbridge in 1875. From the 1880s, when the Methodist section of the Ellesmere Cemetery was developed, the cemetery had little use. The Ellesmere County Council took over its administration in 1981, and since then, the only burials permitted are for families with pre-purchased plots.

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Photo taken in Bishops Corner Cemetery 

Brookside Cemetery

This cemetery was originally held in trust by the Brookside Presbyterian Church for the Presbyterians of Brookside. The first burial was in 1879, the same year that tree planting took place. After a request in 1949, the Ellesmere County Council took over control of the cemetery, and this was formalised in the early 1950s.

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Photo taken in Brookside Cemetery 

Dunsandel Cemetery

The cemetery was first developed in 1879, and in 1882 three denominational blocks were set aside. The first burial took place in 1887, when because of a mix-up in which area was consecrated, the Presbyterian and Anglican blocks swapped. Many of the early burials were young children. In 1890, a public burial ground was mapped off as Block 2, but this was only ever used for four interments - none of which have headstones.

In 1963, the Dunsandel Cemetery Board requested that the Ellesmere County Council take over the cemetery.

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Photo taken in Dunsandel Cemetery 

Ellesmere Catholic Cemetery

The first recorded burials date from 1874. With the approval of the Leeston Catholic Parish, the cemetery was transferred to the Ellesmere County Council in 1980. Some of the original records appear to have been lost, and it is known that there have been burials in the cemetery for which the Council has no record.

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Photo taken in Ellesmere Catholic Cemetery 

Ellesmere Cemetery

When the cemetery was developed around 1874, it was used by Presbyterians - the area reserved being at the back of the cemetery. Other denominations were catered for by Church of England (Anglican), Wesleyan (Methodist) and Catholic cemeteries which existed locally (the first two being in churchyards). The first plots in the cemetery were sold for five shillings each.

In 1878, the Ellesmere Cemetery Trust was established, with two areas (24 acres and 43 acres) comprised in the Trust. The Anglican portion was laid out in 1886 and the Methodist portion in the late 1880s, however, the Catholic area was never taken up. In 1897, a cottage was built in the cemetery and a caretaker subsequently appointed.

In August 1950, the Ellesmere Cemetery Board decided to ask the Ellesmere County Council to take over the administration and upkeep of the cemetery.

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Photo taken in Ellesmere Cemetery 

Greendale Cemetery

The cemetery was first developed in 1877, with the first burial taking place the following year. Early minutes of the Greendale Cemetery Board are missing, but it appears that the following areas were originally allocated: Methodist, Baptist, Church of England (Anglican), Catholic and Presbyterian.

There is no record of the Catholic portion being used, and this was no doubt due to the opening of a Catholic cemetery in Darfield. It was subsequently redesignated as an interdenominational area.

The cemetery came under the control of the Malvern County Council in 1943

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Photo taken in Greendale Cemetery 

Hororata Cemetery

In 1879, an agreement was signed with a Mr Griffiths for three acres adjoining the Church of England (Anglican) cemetery. The land was laid off in four blocks, one of these being reserved for Catholics. The first burial took place in 1879.

In 1916, the Hororata Cemetery Board requested that the Selwyn County Council take control of the cemetery.

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Photo taken in Hororata Cemetery 

Killinchy Cemetery

This was the cemetery attached to All Saints Anglican Church which was consecrated in 1883. The first recorded burial took place in 1876, but from the 1920s, there was only limited use of the cemetery.

In 1981, the church was demolished, the property subdivided and the cemetery vested in the Ellesmere County Council

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Photo taken in Killinchy Cemetery 

Kimberley Cemetery

The first meeting of the Kimberley Cemetery Board took place on 10 April 1879 - the cemetery being gradually developed with funds granted by the original Selwyn County Council. The first interment was in 1879.

The plots were laid out in two blocks, it being decided early on to allocate Block A to the Church of England (Anglicans) and Block B to the Presbyterians, with an area also available for general use.

In 1945, the Kimberley Cemetery Board requested that the Malvern County Council take control of the cemetery.

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Photo taken in Kimberley Cemetery 

Kirwee Cemetery

The first burial occurred in 1879. The cemetery was originally to be laid out in four sections: Episcopalian (northwest), Catholic (northeast), and other denominations (southwest and southeast). A later plan shows three sections: Anglican, Presbyterian and Non Conformist.

The funds of the Kirwee Cemetery Board were exhausted by 1896, and at that time, tenders were put out for grazing sheep in the cemetery and, later on, cropping. In 1913, owing to the low use of the cemetery and very little income being received, a portion of the grounds were fenced off and let for grazing.

The Malvern County Council was asked to take over the cemetery in 1921.

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Photo taken in Kirwee Cemetery 

Kowai Pass Cemetery

All records prior to 1903 have disappeared, having either been lost or destroyed in a fire. The earliest known burials (from headstone inscriptions) are: 1876 for the Methodist block, 1878 for both the Presbyterian and Anglican blocks, and 1881 for the Catholic block.

In 1913, the trustees of the Kowai Pass Cemetery requested that the Tawera County Council take over the cemetery.

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Photo taken in Kowai Pass Cemetery 

Lake Coleridge Cemetery

The Department of Lands and Survey was approached in 1935 by residents of Lake Coleridge to set aside an area of about two acres for a cemetery. On this site was the grave of a man who perished in a snowstorm in 1918. The reserve was vested in the Selwyn County Council in 1939.

In 1952, the Council decided to revoke the appointment of trustees and directly administer the cemetery.


Photo taken in Lake Coleridge Cemetery 

Lincoln Cemetery

Trustees were appointed for the maintenance of the cemetery in 1879, and by the following year, the cemetery was ready for use. The first interment took place in 1880.

Whilst no records of the Lincoln Cemetery Board can be located, it appears that, in the early years, the cemetery was laid out in at least four blocks: Church of England, Presbyterian, Baptist and Roman Catholic.

The Lincoln Cemetery Board still existed in the mid-1940s, but it is not known when the cemetery was handed over to the Paparua County Council.

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Photo taken in Lincoln Cemetery 

Prebbleton Cemetery

This was formerly the cemetery of the Prebbleton Presbyterian Church. The original church was situated to the left of the cemetery, when viewed from the road. It was shifted away and replaced with a new building on the corner of Springs Road and Birchs Road in 1926.

The Paparua County Council agreed to take control of the cemetery in 1967.

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Photo taken in Prebbleton Cemetery 

Shands Road Cemetery

In 1879, trustees were appointed for the maintenance and care of the 'Prebbleton Cemetery' - the original name for this cemetery. The first interment took place in 1881. The control and management of the Shands Track Cemetery (later, Shands Road Cemetery) was handed over to the Templeton Road Board at the end of 1902. What appears to be a plan from 1902 shows five sections: Presbyterian, Church of England, Roman Catholic, Wesleyan (Methodist) and Baptist. In 1954, it appears that the original Lutheran section was reallocated to Church of England, and the 'Strangers' section to Catholic.

There is a lack of information about the ongoing development of the cemetery, but records from the 1950s suggest some involvement by the Lincoln Cemetery Board.

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Photo taken in Shands Road Cemetery 

South Malvern Cemetery

The cemetery was set up in a large number of rows, many of which were never used. There was also an area for non-purchased plots. The first burial took place in 1880.

In 1946, the South Malvern Cemetery Board decided to hand over control of the cemetery to the Malvern County Council.

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Photo taken in South Malvern Cemetery 

Springston Cemetery

The cemetery was established in 1872 on five acres of land given by the Canterbury Provincial Government, with the earliest burial dating from 1874. The first fencing was part sod and part wire, and there were originally two entrances - one to Shands Road and one to Weedons Road (the present one). In 1885, a tender was accepted for building a Mortuary Chapel.

From 16 October 1950, the Springs County Council took over the control and management of the cemetery

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Photo taken in Springston Cemetery 

Waddington Cemetery

The first burial in the Waddington Cemetery took place in 1882. No minutes have survived to reveal the early history of the cemetery, but it is known that in 1880, the East Malvern Cemetery Trust changed its name to the Waddington Cemetery Trust.

The cemetery was laid out in numbered rows, without any denominational areas. It came under the control of the Malvern County Council in 1946.

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Photo taken in Waddington Cemetery 

Weedons Cemetery

The Weedons Wesleyan Cemetery was used for burials from 1877. The cemetery was used by locals in preference to a portion of land at the Weedons Domain that was set aside by the Provincial Government for a cemetery in 1878. After 72 years, and without any official burials having taken place there, that 10 acres of land was returned to the domain.

The Weedons Wesleyan Cemetery was taken over by the Selwyn District Council in July 1991. The church that had been on the site was demolished in 1985.

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Photo taken in Weedons Cemetery