‘£20 memorial tat’ placed on my husband’s grave

Not a 'worthy' memorial: Wendy Stanley shows the original marble vase and the council replacement with grandchildren Scarlett Dannatt, Billy Warren and Archie Dannatt.

Not a 'worthy' memorial: Wendy Stanley shows the original marble vase and the council replacement with grandchildren Scarlett Dannatt, Billy Warren and Archie Dannatt.

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A WIDOW has demanded a “£20 piece of tat” be removed from her husband’s memorial in Gosberton Cemetery.

Wendy Stanley says she is “disappointed” Gosberton Parish Council has removed a £200 marble container she bought ten years ago and left a new, uniform one in its place.

The container was inscribed with her husband Brian William Stanley’s name when he died following a heart attack on December 12, 2000.

She said the changes are a “disgraceful” waste of money and use of authority.

Mrs Stanley said: “I moved away from the village in October 2010 and had no knowledge of the decision, so imagine my surprise when I went to place flowers in the said container to find that it had been removed, placed in the chapel for me to collect, and that the members of Gosberton Parish Council have decided that if I wish to place a floral tribute to my late husband I have to pay £20 to the parish council for a new container.”

Mrs Stanley now lives in Heckington but lived in the village for 40 years.

In a letter to the parish council, Mrs Stanley says the “£20 piece of tat” left by the council “isn’t even worth £2 and is certainly not a worthy memorial for a very loved and missed husband, father and grandfather”.

She added: “There may well have been something on the noticeboard but you don’t look at it when you are familiar with the place.”

In a statement, Gosberton Parish Council vice-chairman Coun Robert Houldershaw said improvements to the cremation section of the cemetery were being done after “many months of careful consideration”.

He said: “Permission for memorials has always been subject to the approval of the parish council as shown in the cemetery rules which are clearly advertised in the cemetery.

“However, over recent years, some families have chosen to place glass or marble containers in front of the plots or to plant directly in to the pathways without seeking parish council approval which would not have been given.

“This has resulted in the pathways becoming narrow and making it difficult for people to walk safely through the areas when there has been a period of wet weather without catching the containers as it can become very slippery.”

Coun Houldershaw said 50 vases have been sold so far with positive feedback from the majority of families.

He added: “The parish council accepts that it has been lenient and not removed the unapproved memorials as soon as they were put in place.

“However, notification of the changes to the cremation plots has been clearly displayed in the cemetery since October 2 allowing families four months to remove the items from the plots.”