Grave theft heartache for Sidbury family

Flowers have been taken from this headstone in Sidbury cemetery. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 4882-24-14SH Flowers have been taken from this headstone in Sidbury cemetery. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 4882-24-14SH

Monday, June 16, 2014
5:00 PM

A Sidmouth woman and her family have been left devastated by another theft of flowers from a grave in the Sid Valley.

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Kelly Fowler has slammed the culprit who stole the items from a planter which adorns her grandparents’ resting place in Sidbury’s cemetery.

The 31-year-old says it was the second time the plot has been targeted in the last two months.

She first discovered flowers missing in May when tending to the grave, but ignored it and planted fresh ones. These too were taken at the weekend.

“I just felt so upset when I saw them missing,” said Kelly. “My nan was the world to all of us.

“We will have to empty the planter and leave it. It costs a fortune to plant flowers just for them to be stolen.”

Kelly, of Sampson Close, has decided to now leave cut flowers when she visits the memorial.

“It is so sad,” she added. “We take pride in keeping the grave nice, and this is what happens. It has affected the whole family, as a lot of them still live in Sidbury. It is disgusting people do this.”

Kelly’s anguish has been echoed by other families, after two similar incidents in Sidmouth’s cemetery last month. Police have urged residents to remain vigilant. Sergeant Andy Squires said: “I am fully aware of how upsetting and insulting these incidents are.

“It is the ultimate form of disrespect. If you see anyone stealing flowers from a grave, I would urge you to call 999 straight away.

“Theft and criminal damage are both arrestable offences and carry a hefty prison sentence and fine.”

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