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Church News

Cambridgeshire vicar removes ornaments from gravestones causing upset among residents

by Alex Collett

A Cambridgeshire vicar has caused upset by removing ornaments and keepsakes from gravestones at her church.

Rev Imogen Falvey, from Holy Trinity Church in Orton Longueville, Peterborough has received complaints from fellow residents.

Rev Falvey, however, states that the items were removed by the church as they were "not allowed under regulations" which is set out in the rules by the Church of England. 

70-year-old Helina Harrington, from Orton, has started a petition for residents to have the right to put what they want on their loved one's gravestones.

Speaking to the Peterborough Telegraph she said "Holy Trinity Church is upsetting so many people" and that "something needs be done" to stop them from continuing to remove items left on the graves.

"It's absolutely disgusting, they've got no compassion - they really don't care," she said. 

Rev Falvey, told the newspaper that it's meant to cause upset. She said: "I don't want to cause distress to anybody, especially people who are grieving."

"Any items which should not have been there, which are not in accordance with the rules, were placed in bags for people to come and collect.

"These items shouldn't be left on graves, which is the message I'm trying to get across."

"People think that they own the graves - they don't."

According to the Church of England rules, fresh flowers are the only thing that maybe placed on the graves.

Rev Falvey said that the church gave residents "sufficient notice" before it removed the items and that it usually tidies its grounds a few times each year.

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