The Ascension Burial Ground and its famous inhabitants
“This project has worked so well. It has brought a new perspective to school, new friendships and a real interest in Cambridge history.”
– Sophie Evans (Chesterton Parent)
June 12, 2012
The Ascension Burial Ground is one of Cambridge’s best-kept secrets but it is the final resting place of engineers, biologists, classicists, historians, poets, philosophers and more.
Students of Chesterton Community College were inspired to find out about some of the most famous ‘boffins in coffins’. A visit to the site was led by Dr Mark Goldie of Churchill College and the students chose and researched the lives of the most famous ‘inhabitants’ of the graveyard.
They were supported by undergrads from Fitzwilliam College. We wrote a play called ‘Giants Beneath Our Feet’ that featured a brief biographies of the chosen twelve. It was was performed at Fitzwilliam College. Sadly, attempts to perform it in situ were rained off!
The students also produced a map and illustrated guide to the burial ground along with designer Anna Betts.
The process of research and dramatization really captured the imagination of the forty young people taking part in the project.