Search

Visitors to Dereham cemetery left distressed after items from graves wrongly removed

PUBLISHED: 11:19 11 February 2018 | UPDATED: 11:19 11 February 2018

Vandals have struck Dereham Cemetery. Picture: Ian Burt

Vandals have struck Dereham Cemetery. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2017

Visitors to a Norfolk cemetery have been left distressed after a member of grounds staff removed items left on loved ones’ graves.

Vandals have struck Dereham Cemetery. Picture: Ian Burt Vandals have struck Dereham Cemetery. Picture: Ian Burt

The Dereham Town Council has issued an apology to the families and friends of those who have been affected by the “honest mistake” made by a member of staff earlier this month.

Items including toys, vases and flowers were removed by the member of staff who was supposed to be removing Christmas wreaths which should no longer have been on graves.

David Walker lives in London but grew up in the town, and takes his mother Gwen to his father’s grave every few weeks.

Mr Walker said: “My father was buried in the cemetery 12 years ago. When we visited on February 3 we noticed the flowers and vase had been removed from his grave.

“It’s upsetting for people, my mum’s 85 and was married to my Dad for 50 years. His grave has never not had flowers on.

“It really upset her for the whole weekend.”

Mr Walker, 54, returned to the site the following day with his mother.

He said: “That’s when we saw a council trailer filled with the items, flowers and toys and such like.

“I would’ve thought as a member of council staff the individual would’ve been more sensitive.”

The council has been proactive in attempting to rectify the problem.

Tony Needham, Dereham Town Council’s clerk said: “This is not council policy, this was an honest mistake by a junior member of staff who got a little over enthusiastic.

“We have already bought 20 vases which fit into graves so that when people come to our offices we can help straight away. We will also refund any items which were incorrectly taken.”

It is thought that of the 5,000 graves in the cemetery, a few hundred will have been affected.

“We expect more people to start coming in now that Christmas is over, and we offer our apologies to anyone who was affected by this,” the clerk continued.

Should anyone have been affected by this incident, the council is asking enquiries to be made by calling 01362 693821.

Other news

Yesterday, 14:26

A parish council in Norfolk is hoping to pay tribute to those who served in the First World War with a new memorial shelter.

Yesterday, 12:59

Center Parcs has pulled its advertising with the Daily Mail after a promotion appeared alongside a column criticising the diver Tom Daley and his husband Dustin Lance Black, who are expecting a child.

Yesterday, 12:47

Norfolk County Council are urging drivers to take extra care on the roads tonight.

Yesterday, 10:58

A former soldier and army captain who was based in Swanton Morley has become the first back-to-back winner of the Royal Artillery Gold Cup at Sandown.

Most Read

Yesterday, 14:26

A parish council in Norfolk is hoping to pay tribute to those who served in the First World War with a new memorial shelter.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:59

Center Parcs has pulled its advertising with the Daily Mail after a promotion appeared alongside a column criticising the diver Tom Daley and his husband Dustin Lance Black, who are expecting a child.

Read more
Thetford
Yesterday, 12:47

Norfolk County Council are urging drivers to take extra care on the roads tonight.

Read more
Norwich
Yesterday, 10:58

A former soldier and army captain who was based in Swanton Morley has become the first back-to-back winner of the Royal Artillery Gold Cup at Sandown.

Read more
United Kingdom
Yesterday, 09:40

The clocks traditionally go forward an hour at 1am on the last Sunday in March.

Read more

Most Commented

Yesterday, 14:26

A parish council in Norfolk is hoping to pay tribute to those who served in the First World War with a new memorial shelter.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:59

Center Parcs has pulled its advertising with the Daily Mail after a promotion appeared alongside a column criticising the diver Tom Daley and his husband Dustin Lance Black, who are expecting a child.

Read more
Thetford
Yesterday, 12:47

Norfolk County Council are urging drivers to take extra care on the roads tonight.

Read more
Norwich
Yesterday, 10:58

A former soldier and army captain who was based in Swanton Morley has become the first back-to-back winner of the Royal Artillery Gold Cup at Sandown.

Read more
United Kingdom
Yesterday, 09:40

The clocks traditionally go forward an hour at 1am on the last Sunday in March.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 6°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Dereham Times e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter