Kerry McCarthy Labour MP for Bristol East
I’m delighted to say that today, Historic England has announced that the gravestone of Mary Carpenter (1807-1877) in Arnos Vale Cemetery has been listed as a Grade II monument.
Mary was an inspirational social and penal reformer active during the mid-19th century, working to improve the lives of destitute children both in Bristol and across the country. As well as founding a ‘ragged school’ for the poor and for young offenders, she was a well-known public speaker, campaigning against slavery and supporting women’s suffrage. Mary wrote and published widely on issues close to her heart, particularly on the treatment and rights of young offenders, and on education for girls in India, where she travelled in the 1860s.
The memorial in Arnos Vale cemetery dates back to 1840, the year Mary’s father died, and remains largely intact. You can read more about Mary and find a map to the memorial here: https://
Historic England is promoting a number of local memorials or monuments, including Mary’s, as part of its Immortalised season, which aims to help England explore who and what it remembers. You can learn more about this project here: https://
[Photo Credit: Historic England]