St Kilda General Cemetery, Victoria

There are reportedly 20 Kinders buried at this cemetery!

Historical Background

The St Kilda Cemetery is one of the oldest suburban cemeteries in Melbourne. It  was laid out by Robert Hoddle, the Surveyor-General of the Colony of Victoria, in 1851. The area surveyed was twenty acres, with four acres each for the Church of England and the Catholic denominations, and two acres each for the Presbyterians, Wesleyans, Baptists and Independents. There was also a further four acres reserved for extensions. Part of this reserve became the Hebrew section and the rest was left for other denominations, not specifically named. The specified capacity of the cemetery was 20,000 graves.


Permission was granted from the Colonial Secretary in England, for the proposed St Kilda Cemetery site early in 1853. In June 1855, the cemetery was officially opened, although the burial registers indicate that there had been a burial in the Baptist section earlier that year.

The management of the cemetery was provided by the St Kilda Cemetery Trust, established by the Government under a Deed of Grant in 1861. There were eleven trustees, two representing each of the local municipalities of Prahran and St Kilda, and one each representing the various denominations.


By 1899, the government declared that all available grave lots had been exhausted, and that the cemetery was to be closed. Up until that time there had been 20,329 burials. The closure meant that there were to be no more burials except for those who already held deeds, or the right of burial certificate.


Closure of the cemetery was varied in 1923 to allow the sale of a small number of allotments, and in 1928 when a further 250 became available. Over the years since then, the Trustees had sought variations of the closure, and this allowed an increase in burials to reach 50,869, in 1965, the last year in which a grave site was sold.


In 1967, the Trusteeship of the cemetery passed to the Springvale Necropolis. A lawn cemetery was established on the site of the old lodge in 1970, and a final closure of the cemetery was made by the government in 1983.


The cemetery is located on a prime piece of land in inner-suburban Melbourne. The cemetery is listed on the Register of the National Estate, and there is interest in the cemetery as an historical entity and an unusual community resource, with its many historical graves and memorials.


Plagiarised from the Friends of St Kilda Cemetery Web Site