Row over flowers in Easebourne churchyard

A bitter row has broken out in Easebourne after villagers claimed flowers left on the graves of their loved ones are being removed and thrown on the rubbish tip.

Feelings have run so high that they are defying the rules and on one grave a notice has been attached to the flowers declaring: “It is my human rights to put these flowers on my loved one’s ashes – leave them alone!”

The churchyard has been closed for burials for some years, but the row is centred on the area still open for the interment of ashes.

More than 100 villagers have signed a petition objecting to new notice in the churchyard warning that only unwrapped fresh flowers and wreaths can be placed on graves

Churchwarden Mr Pratt said: “We have been issued with general directions from the chancellor of the diocese which have been modified this year and at Easebourne we may have been a bit lax and not carried them out as we are meant to.

“We are very happy for wreaths and fresh flowers without wrapping to be placed on graves which will be removed when they have withered.

“It isn’t always possible for bereaved people to remove them and so anyone authorised by the Parochial Church Council can do this.

“Artificial flowers, foliage or large pots and tubs are not allowed. We are trying to put into effect the instruction from the chancellor.”

Full story see Midhurst and Petworth Observer July 26