The founders of Drake Memorial Park intended to create a new type of burial ground for the residents of Plymouth and its surrounding area. One of the first fully-lawned cemeteries in the country, work started on setting out its first five acres in November 1941 under the supervision of Mr L Alexander, who had experience of this type of cemetery in America and Canada. The Park opened in February 1943 under its first general manager Mr F J Alexander.
Two factors make Drake Memorial Park distinctively different to other cemeteries:
- The absence of headstones and monuments. The graves are located within the Park's lawned areas, and are permanently identified with simple plaques which lie flat in the ground. The absence of headstones and monuments that typically clutter the landscape of other cemeteries allows us to create a place of beauty with a natural, parkland feel.
- Perpetual maintenance. While most cemeteries offer the right of burial for a limited number of years (typically 25-100), burial rights at Drake Memorial Park are in perpetuity. This means that individual graves - and the wider Park environment - will be maintained for ever; there are no ongoing annual charges. This is made possible by legally binding covenants and by the absence of headstones and monuments which require a significant amount of maintenance as they age. Drake Memorial Park will therefore never suffer from the gradual decay that affects some of the region's older cemeteries.
As a family-run concern currently in its third generation, we are able to take a long-term view of the Park's management and development while also taking account of the views of current owners of burial rights.