A WIDOWER was left distraught after he visited his late wife’s grave and found cemetery workers had deposited a huge pile of soil on the grave.
Paul Hammond, aged 64, said he is ‘absolutely livid’ after soil from an adjacent grave was heaped on the spot where Rosalie, his wife of 36 years who died from cancer in 2002, lies buried.
“When I saw what had been done, I was absolutely livid - and I still am,” said Paul, of Whiteways Grove, Fir Vale, Sheffield.
He said the act was a ‘desecration’ of the grave at Burncross Cemetery in Chapeltown.
Paul said: “I was shaking with anger. I wondered how stupid anyone could be to do something like that. Someone’s head should roll.
“If that is their policy, then it is bad management and it needs changing. It is disgusting, and it is a disgrace.”
Paul, who was diagnosed with invasive bladder cancer in December, added: “I just don’t need this right now. I’ve also had a triple heart bypass, and this has just topped it off for me.
“To me, it is just like someone dancing on my wife’s grave. The council have shown immense disrespect.
“No-one should have to go through what I have gone through – I would call it an insult, both to me and to my wife’s memory.”
Sue Nadin, Bereavement Services Manager at Sheffield Council, apologised to Mr Hammond.
“We always try to handle these issues with the greatest sensitivity. We fully understand the distress that has been caused and always try to minimise the placing of soil on adjacent graves wherever possible.
“The soil has now been removed and the family grave left in a satisfactory condition. We are sorry if this caused upset but we did do everything possible to lessen the upset caused whilst providing a burial service for others.”