Bill Bryson, in his excellent book 'At home', mentions that an archaeological colleague said that in the churchyard near his house, there were about 20,000 bodies buried, which meant that the area around the church had risen by several feet, and also that it looked as though the church had sunk into the ground. The graveyard has had to accommodate all those material bodies over all these the years!
'The Turrets' has the local churchyard on two boundaries, and also the east thoroughfare which used to have a shop, a bank, and much more interesting, a pub. All these have gone now (thanks to one of Mr Hitler's 'V' rockets), but we strive to continue the tradition of the Market Cross, which adorned our immediate locality.
But looking out at the graveyard from our house, I now wonder at how on earth (or beyond), so many families in our immediate district, now lay quiet and undisturbed, and how so many of the names have vanished without trace. To my reckoning there may well be up to 100,000 bodies buried close to us here, and all of these people have a connection to me and my family.
I walk JRT through the churchyard most days, and reckon I can look at the stones and the graves with some experience, but now, understanding that there are probably several thousand more buried there, I'll really have to wonder why we're all here, and for such a short time...