Doncaster family upset as soil piled on top of top of parents’ grave for second time

Michelle Cook was upset when she visited her parents’ grave covered in rubble.

By David Kessen
Friday, 8th February 2019, 3:14 pm
Updated Saturday, 9th February 2019, 9:36 am
Soil piled on top of Michelle Cook's parents' grave at Redhouse, Cemetery, Doncaster
Soil piled on top of Michelle Cook's parents' grave at Redhouse, Cemetery, Doncaster

Michelle Cook was upset when she visited her parents grave to find it buried in several feet of soil.

But she was devastated when she arrived to find the same thing had happened again just a few months months later.

Michelle Cook and her husband Paul, pictured beside the grave of her parents and her brother at Redhouse Cemetery. Picture: Marie Caley NDFP Cook MC 2

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Michelle complained to Doncaster Council after she arrived to visit the plot at Redhouse Cemetery on Fathers Day last June, and thought that the council would tell her if was likely to happen again.

But last week, she went to visit the same plot after attending a friend’s funeral in the same cemetery – and found it had happened again.

She said ornaments had been taken off the plot and thrown to the ground behind the headstone. 

The plot at Redhouse Cemetry Woodlands,  contains the remains of her dad Kenneth, a railway painter who died in 2016 aged 83, her mum Kath, a long serving barmaid at Carcroft Club who died aged 75 in 2013, and the ashes of her brother, Steve, who died two days after his mum aged 34.

But when she arrived she could not see the grave for the mound of earth which had been dumped on top by grave diggers, surrounded by wooden boards to hold it in place.

Michelle, of St Agnes Road, Belle Vue, said: "We’d gone to a friend's funeral, and went to mum and dad’s grave. After it happened last time, they said they’d notify me if it was going to happen again.

“I think it’s disgusting that this has happened again. I was upset, and if I’m honest, I cried..

“There is a bit of clear land 20 yards away. I don’t see why they couldn’t have put the soil there, but they said they have limited time. 

“It feels like they have no respect.

“The pots we have on the grave had just been thrown behind the headstone, which we fear is loose.

“How would they feel if it was there parents' grave? This has happened twice to us now in seven months.”

Doncaster Council said the family had not contacted them about the latest issue.

Dave Wilkinson, assistant director of trading and property services, said: “We haven’t previously been contacted by the family about this particular matter and it comes as a surprise considering that we had explained the initial implications fully to the family which they said they understood.

“Our designated staff are very professional and treat graves with the required reverence and respect in very difficult circumstances and leave the area as tidy as possible.

“Signs state that items are left at the owners risk and are requested to be kept to a minimum, to assist with grounds maintenance and avoid any upset if accidents occur.”