A GRIEVING couple are warning mourners to be alert after their car was broken into at a Sheffield cemetery.
Disabled Karen Sadler and her partner Anthony Briddock had parked their Peugeot 206 close to the small chapel in the grounds of Hutcliffe Wood Crematorium while they tended to a family grave.
But when they returned just a few minutes later they discovered a large stone planter had been used to smash a window.
Thieves had searched the car and stolen Karen’s handbag – which had been pushed under the front passenger seat and contained credit cards, cash, a mobile phone and personal items.
Karen, 48, who suffers severe epilepsy, and Anthony, 33, a frozen food processing operative, had driven from their home in Buxton to tend to the grave of Anthony’s mother.
Karen said: “I think someone must have been hiding in the bushes waiting for us to leave the car.
“Normally I would never leave my handbag in a car but with the grave being such a short distance from where we parked I shoved it under the seat.
“It’s unbelivable someone would do this to people who have come to grieve. What kind of people would stoop to do something like this? Obviously I wish I had taken the handbag with me now but it’s too late for that.”
Sheffield Council’s Bereavement Services Manager Sue Nadin warned people to be alert.
“Thankfully, we have not had any reported thefts of this kind at the cemetery for some time, but it seems particularly sad when visitors experience thefts of this kind,” she said.
“We would advise all those travelling by car to avoid leaving valuables in their vehicles or at least to ensure they are placed in the boot out of sight. We will be erecting signs to remind visitors to take care.” Call Woodseats police station on 0114 220 2020.