Widows visit Flintshire family graves desecrated by teenage vandals

Reporter:

Lois Hough

GRIEVING widows have been left heartbroken after their husbands' graves were desecrated by vandals.

Yobs splashed paint and pelted eggs around gravestones at Bryn Road Cemetery in Connah’s Quay.

Police discovered the vandalism at 8.45am on Saturday after a concerned member of the public reported the disturbance.

The grave of Maurice Young, 72, was one of those caught up in the attack.

Mr Young, of Brookdale Avenue in Connah’s Quay, died on Father’s Day 2009 after a five-year battle with cancer.

His widow Barbara, 69, who visits the cemetery every week with flowers, has developed shingles since the attack.

She told the Leader: “I just can’t understand how they can do it. I paid a lot of money for that stone because I wanted it to be lovely and now it is ruined. It was in a terrible state and all the flowers had to be binned. It’s a lovely, quiet place and that headstone was only five weeks old. It’s just a shock.”

A team of volunteers including Connah’s Quay councillor Bernie Attridge and community beat manager PC Paul Williams spent the morning cleaning the site.

The gravestone of Colin Edwards, 65, was also attacked by vandals.

Mr Edwards, of Kingston Drive in Connah’s Quay, died of cancer last September.

His wife Jean, 62, said: “I think they were youngsters who haven’t lost anybody close to them before and don’t realise how painful it is.”

Mrs Edwards, who paid almost £2,000 for her spouse’s marble headstone, has now purchased specialist masonry paint to repair the damage.

She praised the team of helpers.

“I can’t thank them enough,” she added. “If I’d have seen it before it was cleaned I would have been heartbroken. I don’t know if I would have coped.”

Paint tins found at the scene have been tested by North Wales Police forensic officers.

Councillor Helen Brown, executive member for estate management, said: “I am utterly disgusted at the mindless actions that have taken place at Bryn Road Cemetery.

“Someone somewhere has gone home with paint on them or someone will have noticed that paint has gone missing.

“There was obviously no thought whatsoever for the relatives and I hope that whoever has done this is totally ashamed off themselves.”

Council bosses are now looking at ways to deter yobs from using the cemetery as a playground.

Paul McGreary, head of public protection, said: “We hope that the deplorable act of vandalism perpetrated at the Bryn Road Cemetery is never repeated and the council will be looking at a range of measures to prevent this happening again.”

Anyone with information can call the non-emergency police number on 101.

See full story in the Leader

Leave your comment

Share your opinions on

Characters left: 1500

Most Read