Missing Burial Register

□ I am trying to find the burial records of George and Josiah Parsonage, two infants who were burned to death in a fire at 30 Lord Street, Gorton, Manchester on 19 November 1897. I have checked parish registers, the National Burial Index and death notices in old newspapers, but I have been told that a burial register was stolen from a church in Gorton. As we cannot trace the children at any of these places, I wonder if there is a copy which has been taken from the original and sent somewhere for safe keeping. Please can you suggest what I should do next? Mrs Pat Parsonage via email

By the time that the children died so tragically in 1897, it was becoming more usual for burials to take place in cemeteries rather than in church burial grounds in the growing towns and cities. Manchester was no exception to this, and there is a cemetery in Gorton on Thornwood Avenue, (Off Hyde Road,) Manchester M9 8JP. However, the burial registers are held at Blackley Cemetery, Victoria Road, Manchester (telephone 0161 740 5359) and the superintendent there should be able to advise you whether or not the children are buried in these cemeteries.

The Church of St James in Gorton also had its own burial ground and the registers are available on microfilm at Manchester Central Library (Local Studies), St Peter's Square, Manchester M2 5PD (0161 234 1979). The

MANCHESTER CITY COUNCIL: The best place to start your search for details of those interred in Manchester municipal cemeteries reference number for the film covering 1897 is MFPR 1484 and the librarian will be able to inform you about any missing register. More information about the library's opening hours and also about Manchester municipal cemeteries can be found at www.manchester. gov.uk/opservices/bereave/cemetery.

The Federation of Family History Societies (see www.ffhs.org.uk) has an ongoing project to record the monumental inscriptions on gravestones (mostly in church burial grounds rather than cemeteries) that are still legible. There may be a record in one of these books relating to the children, and copies can generally be found in main libraries and record offices for the area. DH

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