With an amazing array of cemeteries on offer around London — from the tangled, overgrown wilderness of Abney Park to the manicured, well-maintained lawns of West Norwood Cemetery — there is something to suit everyone’s taste.
Here are the top five famous Australians who are buried in London, and where they chose as their final resting place.
Fifth prime minister of Australia
(1862 — 1928)
Andrew Fisher served as prime minister of Australia on three separate occasions, and is second only to Bob Hawke as Australia’s longest serving Labor prime minister. It was during his second term (1910-1913) that ‘Labour’ was changed to ‘Labor’, after his Minister for Home Affairs King O’Malley convinced the party the American spelling of ‘Labor’ was more modern.
Fisher resigned as prime minister, and from parliament, in 1915 after being absent from parliament without explanation for three sitting days. He went on to serve as Australia’s second High Commissioner to the UK until 1921. He lived in retirement in South Hill Park, Hampstead until he died of influenza in October 1928. Fisher is buried at Hampstead Cemetery on Fortune Green Road.
John McDouall Stuart
Explorer in Australia
Kensal Green Cemetery
Stuart is technically Scottish, having been born and raised as the youngest of nine children in Dysart, Fife, Scotland, before emigrating to the three-year-old frontier colony of South Australia at the age of 23.
After working as a surveyor, Stuart led the first successful expedition to traverse the Australian mainland from south (South Australia) to north and return, and did so without losing a single man. The main route from Port Augusta to Darwin is now known as the Stuart Highway in his honour.
Before his death he returned to Britain and was buried in Kensal Green Cemetery.
Actress and author
Highgate East Cemetery
Born to distinguished doctors in Queensland, Diane Cilento decided to pursue a career in the arts, moving to England in the early 1950s after winning a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
Her early career included stage work, and numerous roles in British films. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Tom Jones in 1963. In 1962 Cilento married actor Sean Connery, the second of three husbands, and had a son, Jason Connery. She also had a daughter, Giovanna, with her first husband. She returned with her third husband, playwright Anthony Shaffer, to Queensland in 1975 where she continued working in films and television before building her own outdoor theatre in the tropical rainforest north of Cairns.
Cilento died in 2011 and is in Highgate East Cemetery where her husband Anthony Shaffer, who died in 2001, is also buried.
Sir Charles Cowper
Politician and Premier of NSW
Highgate West Cemetery
Sir Cowper was an Australian politician in the 1800’s who earned a reputation as a good politician, not a great one. His skill at political evasiveness earned him the nickname “Slippery Charley”. He served as Premier of New South Wales on five different occasions from 1856 to 1870. The electoral division of Cowper in NSW, created in 1900, is named after Sir Charles Cowper.
Sir Cowper headed for London following the end of his fifth turn at Premier at the end of 1870 to serve as Agent-General for New South Wales. He died in London on 19 October 1875 and was buried in Highgate West Cemetery.
General William Birdwood
ANZAC Commander WW1
(1865 — 1951)
Although English, General William Birdwood has earned an important place in Australian history, and should accordingly be acknowledged in the list.
During World War 1 General Birdwood was appointed Commander of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps during the Gallipoli Campaign in 1915. He led the landings onto the peninsula, followed by the evacuation later that year. The popular term ‘Digger’ originates from General Birdwood’s instruction to “dig, dig, dig, until you are safe”, directed to the ANZAC forces as they struggled to overcome Turkish resistance on the slopes of ANZAC Cove.
Following WW1 General Birdwood narrowly missed out on becoming Governor-General of Australia to Sir Isaac Isaacs. He died in England in 1951 and was buried in Twickenham Cemetery. The town of Birdwood in the Adelaide Hills is named after him.
TOP IMAGE: File photo of Australian grave with flag (Via hkhtt hj / Shutterstock.com)]]>
Do they really box? Yup, and kick like Bruce Lee. Check out this collection of skips having a dead-set crack at each other, everywhere from the zoo to the suburban Aussie front lawn.
Ding, dong.. it’s on!]]>
The Australian WikiLeaks founder and spokesman announced via Twitter on Thursday that he would leave the Ecuadorean embassy in London, where he has been living under asylum since August 2012, as soon as Friday.
An investigation by the UN into whether Assange has effectively been detained illegally by Britain and Sweden is due to deliver its findings within the next 24hrs. If they are not in his favour, Assange says will call it quits on his stay at the Knightsbridge address and accept his fate with the British authorities.
If the UN finds in his favour, however, he has demanded that he be given back his passport and all threats of him being detained be dropped.
Assange: I will accept arrest by British police on Friday if UN rules against me. More info: https://t.co/Mb6gXlz7QS pic.twitter.com/mffVsqKj5w
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) February 4, 2016
Until August 2015 Julian Assange was wanted in Sweden for questioning over alleged sexual molestation and unlawful coercion involving two women. He can no longer be charged over these allegations due to the statute of limitations under Swedish law having expired for these alleged offences.
However, a more serious count against Assange of ‘lesser-degree rape’ is still active, giving reason for British police to still arrest him for extradition to Sweden for questioning.
Assange claims that if he is taken to Sweden he risks then being extradited to the United States where, he argues, he may face long-term imprisonment or perhaps even death over his activities with WikiLeaks.
During his three-and-a-half year stay at the embassy Assange has conducted from inside the building numerous appearances via video phone, welcomed visitors including Lady Gaga, and even made a run for the Australian Senate.]]>
AFL CEO, Gillon McLachlan, who was in Ireland as part of the 2015 International Rules Series, warmly welcomed the support of the Prince of Wales.
“The Prince of Wales has a strong interest in the development of young people,” Mr McLachlan said.
“It is this passion, combined with his long held fondness for Australia, which makes us so pleased that he has extended his Patronage and that he continues to lend his support for AFL Europe.
“It is a huge honour to have someone his standing lend his name to AFL Europe.”
AFL Europe CEO Megan Hession reiterated the significance of the announcement.
“AFL Europe is thrilled to have His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales extend his patronage over our Federation,” she said.
“We believe his ongoing support will greatly assist us to reach an even broader audience as we further introduce Australian Football into schools and communities across Europe.”
The past year has been a very busy one for AFL Europe, highlighted by two inaugural events taking place; the AFL Europe Champions League in Amsterdam, and the AFL Grand Final Lunch at Australia House in London.
An action packed-calendar also included the 7th Annual ANZAC Cup in Villers-Bretonneux; the 2015 Axios Euro Cup in Umag, Croatia; a London All-Stars match hosting the Victorian Amateur Football Association (VAFA) representative team, and the 2015 AFL Europe Talent Combine, which was recently staged in Dublin.
Participation across the 22 member nations grew over the past two years from approximately 5,000 players to more than 8,500 with the majority being European nationals rather than Australian expats. This figure also includes a small but growing number of women’s teams, schools, and AFL Auskick participants, all of which are the key focuses on the AFL Europe agenda for 2016.
There is also a growing pathway for talented athletes from Europe to test themselves in the elite AFL competitions. Irish young guns, Conor McKenna of Essendon debuted for his team and Colin O’Riordan has recently been listed with The Sydney Swans as AFL International Rookies.]]>
The more he has toured the world, the more hearts he has touched and the more of the world he has put back into his music.
Whether touring solo or fronting a 9-piece band, Xavier Rudd’s audiences are enthralled with a powerful message, his distinct live show and his must-see-it-to-believe-it ability to wield so many instruments… all at once!
Kick back to the reggae rhythm, but watch out for that brassy blast in this video for Flag by Xavier Rudd & The United Nations…
Following on from his acclaimed 2015 album Nanna and world tour with his cohort band, The United Nations, Xavier Rudd is set to return to Europe for a run of unforgettable shows in 2016 including the Electric Ballroom in Camden, London on Friday, 15 April. He then marches on to Bristol on Saturday, 16 April.
BOOK TICKETS NOW
Also see: www.xavierrudd.com]]>
But is Australia as superstitious as the rest of the world?
For example, in China numbers mean a great deal to the people. The number eight is a symbol of prosperity and wealth, seven represents togetherness, and number two represents good fortune with “good things coming in pairs” according to Roulette in Numbers, a study which discovered the meaning behind the numbers on a roulette wheel.
But does that cross the South Pacific to Australia? Not exactly, but when it comes to cricket there’s one number which is particularly significant, but for all the wrong reasons.
The number 87 is known as the Devil’s number by Australian cricketers, with a story dating back to 1929 when Don Bradman was bowled on 87 by Harry Alexander. That day was watched by a young Keith Miller, who, devastated by his hero falling 13 short of a century, remembered the innings and recalled it many years later when playing for South Melbourne.
When teammate Ian Johnson, who would later go onto captain the Test team, fell for 87, Miller recalled the famous incident and legend spread. Today, it’s a score no player wants to be dismissed on, and is considered the unluckiest number in cricket.
However, superstition in the country dates back much further than The Don and right back to the days when only the Indigenous Australians walked the Outback. One superstition leads Aboriginal groups to believe that certain animal spirits can cause harm to people. For example, the willy-wagtail bird is believed to cause storms and violence which can kill people.
More commonly, actions such as crossing your fingers is considered to bring good luck across the planet but isn’t specific to our country. When it comes to the likes of China, Thailand, and even Italy, we’re mere amateurs, or certainly more averse to blaming moments of chance on bad luck or superstition.
We’d love to know if you have any superstitions which have brought you luck or triumph? Comment below and let’s see if we really are a country who really does believe luck is on our side…]]>
It was there on those foreign shores that over 60,000 men, armed with determination, loyalty and courage, forged the famous Anzac legend and immortalised the Aussie spirit. It’s a spirit that the country has continued to build itself upon ever since.
I’ve come to think about this veteran’s explanation often. Never more have his words hit home with me than when I find myself half a world away from it. It isn’t until I came out of that wonderful scrub from Down Under that I’ve truly been able to see the forest from the trees. And it is one hell of an interesting view. It is ironic that it often takes our citizens only a few months abroad to learn what truly defines an Aussie, more clearly than we ever could whilst in the midst of our Great Southern Land.
For me, never have I more truly felt that we really are ‘The Lucky Country’. I come across this almost every day when telling Europeans of my plans to backpack for as long as possible. There reaction is usually one of pure astonishment.
“You are so brave. You’re doing it alone?! It’s something we would never be able to mentally and financially do. You were able to just quit your job?! Your family supports this?!”
It truly makes me feel as if I’m achieving the equivalent of flying a solo mission to Mars.
But then they find out I’m Australian. In a second, their reaction changes and everything makes sense. Of course you’re Australian. Only Australians are lucky enough to earn enough money to travel the world for years on end before they reach the age of 25. Only Australians are stupid enough to blow those hard earned thousands on leaving a country that most people here would kill to visit instead of investing it back home. Only Australians have that security in knowing they can go home and start making ridiculous amounts of money again immediately, even if it’s just as a casual bartender.
Being able take off across the world is a venture that has almost become a right of passage for my generation at home. It takes that surprised reaction of foreigners who are battling a severe economic crisis and have a different mentality to realise I should never be taking this for granted.
Along with discovering a new-found appreciation for my homeland, I’ve learnt to recognise a fellow Australian immediately. Never before have I been able to pick one out of crowd so easily as now. We are the fresh-faced wanderers who dominate almost every hostel and festival. We are the hordes of the people who try to outrun the Spanish at San Fermin, out-drink the Germans at Oktoberfest, and out-ski the tourists and workers on the Whistler slopes.
We are about “living in the moment” to justify our hardcore and risky ventures abroad. We are the packs of tanned and broad-shouldered guys walking around with that cocky swagger wrapped in board shorts, singlets and thongs, and the packs of girls who are carrying backpacks that would give our chiropractors a heart attack. We bitch about how boring our country is when faced with New York, the Swiss Alps, and Glastonbury, but will knock the first foreigner who actually bags Australia out. A nation of carnivores, of early risers who expect the coffee shops to be open before 10am, and hard workers so we can have an easy life.
Unlike that World War One veteran, we may have never had to see our mates die away on foreign soil at the hands of an enemy. We may have never had to face guns and violence to appreciate our tranquil lifestyle. But in most Australians faces abroad, you can see the light of silently having comfort in the knowledge of just how bloody lucky we really are.]]>
MP’s infants will no longer be considered ‘visitors’ in the chamber. Visitors are allowed in the viewing galleries but not on the floor of the house.
“No member male or female will ever be prevented from participating fully in the operation of the parliament by reason of having the care of a baby,” Leader of the House Christopher Pyne said on Tuesday, boasting of a ‘family-friendly’ parliament.
“There is absolutely no reason that rules should remain in place which make life in politics and the parliament more difficult for women,” he added.
“While this significant change only requires a single sentence to be amended in the rule book, I hope it sends a clear message,” he said.
The breastfeeding in parliament issue came to the fore again in 2015 when Assistant Treasurer Kelly O’Dwyer was advised to manage the expression of her breast milk better in order that she did not have to miss votes on the floor of parliament while feeding her baby.
At the time, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten called for a change to the rules.
Despite the changes, however, O’Dwyer has indicated she will not breastfeed in the chamber.
In the upper house, the Senate, nursing mothers are already allowed to breastfeed, according to an exemption enacted back in 2003.]]>
While she was skiing in Alaska’s Neacola Range, shooting for the movie Paradise Waits, snow shifted to ice and Collinson had a tumble.
How she escaped without serious injury is quite astonishing.
Collinson, who in December became the first woman to win Powder Magazine’s ‘Best Line’ award, described the fall last week on Good Morning America.
“At first I was trying to slow myself down with my arms, but then once I started picking up speed I realized that I was going to be falling for a while and the snow was icy and there was big icy snowballs,” she said.
“As I was tumbling, I covered my face and protected my head with my arms and I kind of just held on until I stopped.”
This article originally appeared here.]]>
Even if they manage to survive the onslaught of natural disasters, Aussies are then still at risk of being mauled and poisoned at every turn. And they are proud of it!
Cyclones bring with them nothing but fear, gale force winds of around 120kms per hour and torrential downpours. According to the Australian weather service, Aussies can look forward to no less than around 20 tropical cyclones threatening havoc between October and April every year.
Summer is a scorcher. When Aussies say it’s hot, they really mean it. There was only chicken mesh between Walgett, NSW and Hell when on 3 January 2014 a mid-day high of 54deg Celsius was recorded.
Wikipedia says: “The Black Saturday bushfires were a series of bushfires that ignited or were burning across the Australian state of Victoria on and around Saturday, 7 February 2009. The fires occurred during extreme bushfire-weather conditions and resulted in Australia’s highest ever loss of life from a bushfire; 173 people died and 414 were injured as a result of the fires. As many as 400 individual fires were recorded on 7 February. Following the events of 7 February 2009 and its aftermath, that day has become widely referred to as Black Saturday.”
The Australian saltwater croc is the largest of all living reptiles, as well as the largest terrestrial and riparian (riverbank) predator in the world. Male salties can reach sizes of up to 6.7 m and weigh as much as 2,000 kg. While very aggressive, attacks are in fact relatively rare due in part to the fact that the crocs only inhabit the sparsely human populated tropical north. 28 crocodile attacks were recorded in Australia between 2010 and 2014. Even fewer are fatal, with just 7 in that period. Still, not a very nice way to go out. There are freshwater crocs too, by the way, but they tend to be a little more shy.
Australia sure makes up for what its neighbour is lacking in snake species. While New Zealand has none, nada, zero, zilch, the big island next door is blessed with no less than 100 poisonous snake species. In fact, Australia is the only place on Earth where there are more venomous snake species than non-venomous. Better check that sleeping bag… And it comes as no surprise then that the three most venomous snakes on the face of the planet would find themselves on the smallest continent… They are the Coastal Taipan (most venomous), the King Brown and the Tiger Snake. Just a drop of venom from the Coastal Taipan is enough to kill 20 adults. The Kiwi’s must have been delighted when the continental drift cut-off access for those little darlings!
This ‘delightful’ creature looks like something that escaped the meteorite the that killed all the dinosaurs (and why wouldn’t he survive, he’s Australian after all). The ill-tempered Cassowary is as tall as a grown man and has the demeanour of a government official past retirement working over-time into his smoke break after a night with a bottle of sweet wine. The horned bird delivers a mean kick able to break your chest plate and is the deadliest bird on the planet.
Of course, in a country where an over-sized guinea fowl can take you apart, certainly a snail – you read right, the bunch of goo hooded with a pretty shell – can be fatal too. In recent years, 20 people have been unable to ‘outrun’ the marine dwelling Marble Cone Snail and, as a result, met their untimely demise.
Other deadly Aussie marine nasties, of course, include sharks, the Blue Ringed Octopus, Stone Fish and …
Okay, so maybe you gave up on camping — for very valid reasons — and decide to enjoy a day at the beach instead. Step away from the water, drop your beach bucket and run for your life (to the nearest pub is safe sanctuary). In Australia another blob of brainless goo can of course kill you. The Box Jellyfish is a notoriously dangerous Australian native and has been labelled ‘the world’s most venomous creature’. With tentacles reaching around 60 meters wrapping around a victim’s bikini-clad body, it injects harpoon-like triggers full of venom. Victims suffer excruciating pain and death is possible within 2 to 5 minutes! There is no anti-venom available and victims are treated symptomatically. Ouch!
Ewwwww! Australia is home to a number a poisonous spiders and the world’s most venomous (picking up the trend here?). The Sydney Funnel Web (pics top and below), the Bird Eating Tarantula (Yes , a spider that eats birds) and the Trapdoor Spider are a common sight in suburban Australia. Luckily, clever humans quickly caught on and, thanks to a well-practiced spider-stomping technique and remarkable advances in anti-venom research, not many human fatalities due to a spider’s bite are recorded these days.
Yup. Sitting on your kitchen counter are Australia’s biggest killers on this list. According to statistics from The Electrical Regulatory Authorities Council, there were about 70 fatalities in the past five years resulting from electrical faults in kitchen appliances. Faulty appliances were also responsible for more than 11,000 house fires in same period. So you see, Australia’s weather and animals really aren’t that bad after all. It’s the toasters you need to watch out for.
ADDITIONAL IMAGES: Shutterstock.com]]>