Highgate Cemetery was one of London's "magnificient seven" cemeteries, which was built on top of a ley line in Highgate during the population explosion of the Victorian era. By the 1960s, it had closed down, and people had vandalised it.
At some point, the Corvids, which people took for being vampires, were trapped in the ley line. In 1970, there was a "vampire hunt" in search of the "Highgate Vampire". Intending to use his cultist followers as bait, in 1972, the cult leader Gabriel Rosewood lured them to the cemetery so he could gain their power. The Corvids killed Dave and some of Rosewood's followers and Rosewood himself, before the Twelfth Doctor banished them back into the Time Vortex.