Undertakers

Undertakers, individuals or firms carrying out the arrangements for funerals, have been in existence since at least 1698. The business was usually performed by joiners and carpenters as an adjunct to their normal work but eventually some of these tradesmen abandoned all other work to concentrate solely on funeral arrangements.

Many firms both large and small have directed funerals in York Cemetery since it opened. The table below gives details of those who have performed over 1000 funerals in the cemetery between 1837 and 1983 (37.2% of burials). The strata of society with which they normally dealt can be determined by comparing the ratio of private to public burials which they each performed.

Undertakers (1837-1983)

Undertaker Address (latest) From To Private Public Total. Burials/year
James Rymer Penleys Grove Street  1850 1983 4341  4539 9335 70.50
York           Co-operative Society Cromwell Road 1922 1983 6621 465 7237 119.15
William Wainman & Son Foss Islands Road 1877 1959 1268 2941 4355 53.11
William Usher Fletcher Coppergate 1855 1923 380 2749 3195 49.15
T&F Dennett Holgate Road 1845 1925 1073 1724 2973 37.18
Richard & George Hill Walmgate 1840 1892 523 1658 2290 44.04
James Cook Lawrence Street  1874  1904  399  1517  1988 66.27
FW Matthews Darnborough Street 1893 1975 1616 254 1968 24.00
John Spence Compton Street 1894  1946 428 1471 1950 37.50
H Cross & Son Blossom Street 1879 1969 1094 486 1687 18.74
H Wetherell The Mount 1886  1957 1289 236 1594  22.45
Hunter & Smallpage  Goodramgate 1878 1983 1332  47 1403  13.36
Joseph Hodsman Lower Eldon Street  1886  1964  1134  171  1364 17.49
George E Walker Clarence Street 1919  1947  116  1189  1314 46.93
Belt Brothers Clarence Street  1899  1958  978  223  1238 20.98
George Learman Clarence Street  1855  1921   463  564  1176 17.82