In 1891 a 2.7 acre site, consisting of meadow land, was purchased and opened under the Government Burial Act of 1853 as a cemetery.  The chapel and the lych-gate were built soon afterwards and 80 lime trees were planted which still surround the cemetery today.  

The Chapel, designed by London architect George H. Birch of Devereux Chambers, was built in 1892 and paid for by subscriptions from the people of Wem.  

The cemetery is unusual, as the Lichfield Diocese only knows of one other cemetery in this diocese that comes under the Government Burial Act of 1853.   This means that it cannot be officially closed and passed over to the Town Council of Wem.  The cemetery and the chapel are owned by the community of Wem vested in the incumbent of the Parish and the Parochial Church Council.

No new burials have taken place in the cemetery since 1975 other than into existing family graves.

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