Scottish council branded ‘disgraceful’ after mum finds grave of stillborn babies trashed by workers

A digger was driven over the grave. Picture: FFP
A digger was driven over the grave. Picture: FFP
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A Scottish woman has told of the absolute horror she felt when she last visited the grave of her twin babies, only to find that Council staff had desecrated it.

Mary Kaur’s children were stillborn in March 2016 and buried at St Drostans Cemetery in Markinch, Fife. The family could not afford a proper headstone at the time so the undertakers provided an engraved marker with the names of Sophia and Boota engraved on it.

Some items had been broken and dumped behind someone else's grave. Picture: FFP

Some items had been broken and dumped behind someone else's grave. Picture: FFP

Mary and the family, from Glenrothes, had added a ceramic angel vase, some solar lights, and a flower holder to mark the location of the grave.

But when Mary made her weekly visit on Sunday last week, she was horrified to find that everything had been moved off the grave, the vase broken, and to add insult to injury it had been ‘dumped’ behind another person’s headstone.

Mary told us: “I simply couldn’t believe what I was seeing. There were two tyre tracks right across my babies’ grave, and it was obvious from the new grave opened nearby that the council staff decided my twins final resting place didn’t matter, so they simply discarded the grave plaque along with the other personal mementoes and tossed it aside like rubbish for the bin.

“How uncaring and disgraceful is that. What type of human being, looking at a marker with the dates 2016 on it, would rip it up and drive a digger across that grave, knowing there must be wee ones buried there? They trashed my wee ones resting place.”

The twins' grave was ruined. Picture: FFP

The twins' grave was ruined. Picture: FFP

Alan Paul, a Fife Council senior manager, told The Scotsman’s sister title, The Fife Free Press: “We understand how important our cemeteries are to grieving families and always try to avoid causing any extra distress. “Sometimes in order to access other gravesides we need to move objects from graves but we would always try to do this causing the least disruption possible and replace any items which had been moved.

“On this occasion we have clearly not met those expectations and I’d like to offer my heartfelt apology to the family. The items which have been moved or damaged will be replaced.

“We have already spoken to the family to apologise and have assured them we will be looking into this incident to ensure nothing like this happens again.”

Mary responded saying: “I am pleased that the council have acknowledged their failings, and for the hurt and distress caused.

“When a grave is all a parent has left, it becomes a place of sanctuary, somewhere that we can grieve for our loss in private, but when that is taken away, or, as in this case, is treated so disrespectfully, it merely serves to increase that pain tenfold.”

Markinch undertakers Crosbie Mathew, who organised the original funeral of the twins, were similarly appalled to learn what had happened that they have agreed to replace the grave plaque free of charge.

This story first featured on Fife Today.