Woman ‘distraught’ after deer eats £400 bouquet on grave

A SCOTS woman was left distraught after discovering a deer had eaten a bouquet of flowers laid at her mother’s grave.

The deer ate a bouquet the woman had left on her mother's grave. Picture: Contributed

Carolyn Johnstone paid £400 for an arrangement of flowers to be placed at the grave of her mother Elizabeth MacLean.

But she was shocked when she discovered the wreaths and bouquets had been damaged at the gravesite in Tomnahurich Cemetery in Inverness, Highlands.

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She claims she was never told there was a deer problem at the cemetery.

And now Carolyn, 51, wants to see new warning signs at the cemetery so the same thing doesn’t happen to anyone else.

She said: “I was absolutely distraught and spent the whole day in tears.

“One of the wreaths cost £150 and was from my son and daughter-in-law, and it was very sentimental.

“I don’t want anyone else to go through this because it’s heartbreaking.

“I spoke to the council and they said it was deer. I am okay with that but I think that people should be forewarned.

“I would like to have been notified before spending such a large amount of money.

“I paid out of my own pocket and I tried to make it look nice for my mother who was the last in the family grave.

“Somewhere along the line, someone should have told me what might happen or there should be a sign up somewhere.”

A spokeswoman for the Highland Council said: “Unfortunately, due to the location of both Inverness burial grounds being on the outskirts of the city, and adjacent to forests, which are the natural habitat of deer, it is a fact that wild deer do gain access to our burial grounds.

“Whereas we fully understand the implications that this may have, when deer eat floral tributes, regrettably there is very little that the Highland Council can do to prevent this.

“Deer fencing does surround Kilvean cemetery, however our burial grounds must remain open to the public.

“Regardless of deer fencing, gates have to remain open and therefore it would be impossible to prevent deer from gaining access at all times.

“We would suggest that there be a request for signage to be installed in council burial grounds, warning of the potential of deer.”