Search

Priest calls for action to clean-up vandalised cemetery

07:00 18 July 2014

The vandalism, rubbish and damage at Buckingham Road Cemetery in Ilford.

The vandalism, rubbish and damage at Buckingham Road Cemetery in Ilford.

Archant

The graves of Buckingham Road Cemetery are crumbling, cans of beer litter the ground and an empty brandy bottle sits on a memorial to those who died defending our country.

Father Gareth JonesFather Gareth Jones

The priest of neighbouring St Mary the Virgin church, Father Gareth Jones, has had enough and is calling on the council to take action.

He says the cemetery and the area around it have been neglected for too long.

“It’s constantly vandalised,” Fr Jones said. “The war memorial is cleared up once a year, before the Remembrance Day service but we feel there should be more investment.”

Fr Jones said he wanted the council to improve the area and in particular, protect the First World War memorial in the centre of the cemetery.

But the Westleigh Group, which manages the site on behalf of Redbridge Council, says the site is maintained weekly.

Jason King, who runs the cemetery on behalf on the group, said: “We haven’t received any reports of vandalism for five to six years, and thousands of pounds has been invested transforming the cemetery, clearing trees and demolishing out-of-use buildings.”

He added that a lot of the gravestones were more than 100 years old and had to be laid down for health and safety reasons.

Fr Jones said that a lot of work had been carried out in the past four years, but requests made to Redbridge Council for a clear-up of the graves and the introduction of CCTV have been rejected.

He said: “I would like to see them (Redbridge Council) doing more.

“It’s a sad place, the whole of the area is sad, because it has been neglected over the years.”

A spokesman for Redbridge Council said: “We have worked to tidy some of the graves and have arranged for the local Police Safer Neighbourhood Team to cover the area on their patrols.

“We have also arranged for a rough sleeping outreach worker to visit the area at least weekly.”

The council said that relocatable CCTV had been used in the cemetery but had limited effect due to the lack evening lighting and suitable places for it to be mounted.

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ilford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ilford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ilford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest News Stories

26 minutes ago
Redbridge Council has announced plans to build a new swimming pool at Mayfield School. 

Cllr Wes Streeting with other Cllrs, pupils from the school, Head Teacher and the Chair of Governers

Details about a proposed third public swimming pool in Redbridge have been released.

07:00
Wilson Chowdhry, owner of AA Security on 73 Green lane has received hoards of junk mail. The mail is for at least ten other addresses than 73 Green lane.

Ilford’s first ever Christmas Festival will take place on Tuesday.

Yesterday, 12:00
Househunter turned employee Jess Rodgers

It’s not every day a visit to a housing development turns into a new job – but that’s what happened to one 26-year-old from South Woodford.

Yesterday, 09:00
Disaster Chef Laura Grant

A marketing professional with a terrible track record in the kitchen has been named one of the most hopeless cooks in Britain.

Most read news

From the Earth’s elliptical orbit to the scheduling of Christmas, the winter solstice is as scientifically complex as it is culturally significant.

The introduction of the Genomic Medicine Centres is seen a a genetic revolution in the NHS, but why?

Ahhh… When did the 1990s become the “good old days”?

After weeks of challenges and cringeworthy boardroom showdowns, Lord Sugar made a decision – and Twitter was watching.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Ilford Recorder e-edition today E-edition