Location: St. Johns Cemetery, Margate
Walk: 3m (4.67km) (Return journey). Long with some hills.
Keeper: Joan Smith
Begin the walk at the entrance to Arlington House on All Saints Avenue.
I was told by a local shopkeeper that his grandmother told him a story,
when he was a little boy, that an elephant is buried in the ground upon
which Arlington House now stands, it having once been the site of a
Walk under the railway bridges and turn left into Tivoli Park Avenue.
Continue along the road past the park and the sports field. Look out
for the green parakeets among the trees. They are descendants of aviary
escapees about 20 years ago. Walk past the woods on your right hand
side. At the end of the chain link fence turn along the footpath. This
will bring you out on Hartsdown Road.
Cross the road and continue right until you reach the footpath on the
left. This will bring you out by Shottendane Farm. Turn right and you
will see the memorial to P. C. Jon Odell, who died on duty in 2000.
Cross the road and continue right until the footpath just before the
houses (a walk of about a quarter of a mile). Follow the footpath. At
the top of the hill look back and you will see (from the left) the landmarks
of All Saints Church, Arlington House, St Johns Church and the chimney
of the hospital.
The path ends on Manston Road, opposite Half Mile Ride. Cross the road,
turn left and continue past the cemetery wall. Ignore the first entrance
and go in the main entrance a little further on. Walk between the chapels
and turn left to where you will find a magnificent memorial to the Sanger
family, topped by a full size statue of a sad looking circus horse.
When I first saw this I remembered Sanger’s circus from my childhood,
in the early fifties. I lived in Bedford, my home town, and I can remember
Lord Robert Sanger’s touring circus. So I made the connection
between the elephant and assume that Sanger’s circus must have
come from Margate.
Further along the cemetery path is the grave of J. M. W. Turner’s
physician friend David Price. See if you can find it. Then look for
the letterbox. It is on a yew tree close by. The cemetery dates from
1856 and is now a good place for bird watching and I am also told that
there are also some albino squirrels.When I got home I found a lot more
out about the Sanger family in a recently published book on the history
of Dreamland, the old amusement centre, which is adjacent to Arlington
House in Margate. The book contains a lovely photograph of the memorial
and shows where the letterbox is sited.
On leaving the cemetery continue right towards the town and return along
Tivoli Park Avenue.m here thirty-nine steps could take you in any direction.