Churchyard

St Leonard’s churchyard has a number of interesting features, both natural and man made. There are many fine old trees, mainly yew and cedar. The two most impressive cedars standing to the west and north of the church date from 1810 and 1814. Despite various episodes of storm damage and essential maintenance, they remain wonderful examples of the species. There are more than 500 visible gravestones in the churchyard, a few of which are particularly noteworthy. The oldest of the stones are close to the church – mainly on the south side, many of which are Grade 2 Listed for their historic interest. Mary Bowers was apparently buried in extremely cold weather. When the horse-drawn hearse returned to Braunston, the driver was found to have frozen to death! The famous clockmaker Blencowe Churchill is buried in a family vault near the south path. He made longcase clocks with brass faces, some with only one hand Josiah Key was a significant local benefactor, establishing the village education charity. Key’s House and Key’s Lane are named after him. His family vault is close to the south wall of the church. Finally, please remember that St Leonard’s churchyard is a special place – not only by virtue of the fact that it is the church grounds, but also somewhere where people can reasonably expect to find peace and tranquillity, especially as they reflect and remember those who have died. Please respect the churchyard. Thank you.