The Charles Williams Society

Charles Williams’s Grave


All members of the Society will know that Charles Williams is buried in Holywell Cemetery next to St Cross Church in Oxford.  The grave is, strictly speaking, the responsibility of the estate, i.e. the heirs, of Charles Williams, but for many years the Charles Williams Society has taken on this responsibility and has tried to look after the grave.  Until recently a firm of stonemasons and gardeners was employed to take care of it but, unfortunately, the firm was taken over and the contract lapsed.

Visitors to the grave during the last year or two have been distressed to find that the grave has become increasingly unkempt. The society has been aware of this and been trying to find someone who will be able to do the work that was previously done by the company we employed. Thanks to the efforts of Susannah Harris Wilson, someone has been found who will do precisely this: an excellent professional gardener who has already begun the work of restoration.

The cemetery itself is a place of great interest.  A number of well known people: writers, scholars, artists are buried there. Only a few feet away from Charles Williams can be found the graves of Kenneth Grahame, Walter Pater, and Williams’s friends, Hugo Dyson, Austin Farrer and Maurice Bowra. It is also a place of quiet beauty: a sanctuary for wildlife and local flora.  The Friends of Holywell Cemetery are anxious that it should retain its distinctive character and not become a clipped and manicured place. We are extremely fortunate to have found someone to take care of the grave who understands the singular charm and attractiveness of its surroundings.

Brian Horne