Alderney Road

I was trying to remember the reference in W.G. Sebald’s Austerlitz to the old Ashkenazi cemetery on Alderney Road – or Alderney Street as it is called in the novel.   Jacques Austerlitz lived in the street ‘quite a long way out in the East End of London.   It is a remarkably quiet street running parallel to the main road not far from the Mile End junction, where there are always traffic jams and, on such Saturdays, market traders set up their stalls of clothes’.   Alderney Road is one of a group of streets of 1860s terrace housing tucked between Queen Mary and the railway tracks:-

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The cemetery was established in 1696 alongside the older Velho Sephardic cemetery and stopped being used in 1852.   It’s described in the book as ‘a plot where lime trees and lilacs grew and in which members of the Ashkenazi community had been buried ever since the eighteenth century’:-

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