Frank Matcham's Grave, Highgate Cemetery, London

Two views of Frank Matcham's grave in the Eastern Cemetery of Highgate Cemetery, Swain's Lane, London N6. The view on the left shows the inscription. This plain cross marks the grave of the prolific theatre designer who was "believed to have designed over 100 theatres and music halls in this country, including the Coliseum and the Palladium" ("Death"). He rebuilt many more. He was only 66 when he died at his home in Westcliff-on-Sea on the Essex coast, in May 1920, and was still busily engaged in his work. He died such an unnecessary death — from an infection acquired from cutting his fingernails too short (Kilburn 15).

Position in the cemetery: background left is the grand neoclassical mausoleum of Lord Dalziel of Wooler.

His body was brought to London, where a service was conducted at St Paul's, Long Lane, Finchley. Afterwards, his coffin "surrounded” by flowers, and followed” by two coaches filled with wreathes" was conveyed to Highgate. It was a small gathering, just family members, including his two brothers, two brothers-in-law, one of his daughters, her husband and son, and his current partner, Frederick Chancellor. His wife Hannah Maria who also died in 1920, is buried in the same grave.

Photograph at upper left and lower right and formatting by the author. Photograph at upper right by Robert Freidus. [You may use these images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL. Click on the images for larger pictures.]


"Death Of Mr. Frank Matcham." Times. 20 May 1920: 16. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 3 Aug. 2013.

"Deaths." Times. 24 May 1920: 11. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 3 Aug. 2013.

Kilburn, Mike. London's Theatres. London: New Holland, 2002. Print.

Last modified 3 August 2013