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Rude protest over cemetery row

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A Shrewsbury graveyard at the centre of a row about tributes being left by graves has been branded with a clear message to council bosses - a 12ft long message reading "Mean Buggers" branded on a verge bank. A Shrewsbury graveyard at the centre of a row about tributes being left by graves has been branded with a clear message to council bosses. Visitors to the Chaffinch area of Emstrey Crematorium were left upset today after spotting the 3ft high, 12ft long message "Mean Buggers" branded on a verge bank with what appears to be weed killer. Previously, Shrewsbury and Atcham borough councillors received letters and calls of complaint from dozens of people whose relatives have been laid to rest in Emstrey Crematorium after they were told to remove flowers and ornaments. The message, believed to have been put there yesterday or this morning, is thought to have been aimed at council officials. Read the full story in today's Shropshire Star

The 12ft message to council bosses at the Chaffinch area of Emstrey Crematorium in Shrewsbury. Picture: Laura Dutfield.A Shrewsbury graveyard at the centre of a row about tributes being left by graves has been branded with a clear message to council bosses.

Visitors to the Chaffinch area of Emstrey Crematorium were left upset today after spotting the 3ft high, 12ft long message "Mean Buggers" branded on a verge bank with what appears to be weed killer.

Previously, Shrewsbury and Atcham borough councillors received letters and calls of complaint from dozens of people whose relatives have been laid to rest in Emstrey Crematorium after they were told to remove flowers and ornaments.

The message, believed to have been put there yesterday or this morning, is thought to have been aimed at council officials.

Grieving relatives were shocked to receive letters from the authority, which owns the crematorium, asking for all ornaments and shrubs to be removed by September 15.

Following protests, borough councillors formed a group to review the crematorium's policy on floral tributes and was looking to contact the Church of England to consider its views and experience on managing consecrated ground.

One relative, who wished to remain anonymous, said: "I went to the Chaffinch area of the cemetery on Thursday afternoon to put flowers on my wife's grave and it was fine then. But when I went today I thought the council had cleared a grass verge but standing back I realised what it was.

"It is awful. I was so upset I rang the people who did the funeral service for me and they were absolutely disgusted.

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"I had the letter as well but obviously someone has taken umbrage to it. I walked backwards, away from it, and I could read it. It is disgraceful."

David Wraith, environmental health manager responsible for bereavement services at the council, has said the council sent out the letters after receiving complaints about the number of objects left on graves at the site.

He said the letter was to remind people of the rules they had agreed to abide by when they purchased burial rites and was not intended to cause upset or announce new rules.

The borough council was unavailable for comment today.

By Rhea Parsons

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