National Trust of Guyana

Bourda Cemetery

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Location: Bourda, Georgetown

Classification: Civil Infrastructure

Period/ Year Built: 18th century

Historical Background / Description:

Bourda Cemetery is one of the oldest cemeteries in Guyana. This graveyard is located on Regent and Bourda Streets, Bourda, Georgetown. The 18th century cemetery was formerly known as Bourda Walk and was a part of the larger plantation called Vlissengen which was owned by Mr. Joseph Bourda. The cemetery initially was a private one catering to the upper class who contributed politically and economically to the then Dutch colony of Demerara; however, it was then extended to family members of such citizens. In 1876, an ordinance was passed, transferring the cemetery into the care of Georgetown’s Mayor & City Council. 

There were many attempts to change the use of the land that the cemetery occupied, with the first serious attempt being recorded in 1960 when the local government initiated a plan to build a new road linking Regent and Charlotte Streets, however their efforts were stopped by Mr. H R Persaud of the Historical Society. Attempts to construct the road were made again in 1982, 1992, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2004 and the latest 2011.

One of the earliest dated tombs in the cemetery is that of Assistant Secretary of the Court of Policy, Mr. Adrien Tinne, who died in 1815. Today, the cemetery is no longer in use.