Plea made to re­spect Kil­naughton ceme­tery

‘Places of rest should be re­spected, as should the feel­ings of fam­ily mem­bers who wish to visit the graves of their loved ones.’

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Is­lan­ders are be­ing asked to ‘grass’ on a mys­tery mesh-snip­per let­ting nui­sance rab­bits back into a ceme­tery on Is­lay.

Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil is urg­ing any­one who knows who is re­spon­si­ble to tell the po­lice.

High­lands and Is­lands MSP Don­ald Cameron has also ex­pressed con­cern at the dis­tress be­ing caused to the rel­a­tives of peo­ple buried at Kil­naughton Ceme­tery be­cause of the rab­bits that are dig­ging un­der graves.

Mr Cameron said: ‘I have been con­tacted by a num­ber of peo­ple who are, frankly, dis­mayed by the im­pact rab­bits are hav­ing on the burial ground.

‘De­spite the best ef­forts of coun­cil staff, who have sought to fence the ceme­tery off with rab­bit-proof mesh, they are find­ing that the mesh is be­ing cut, which is al­low­ing the rab­bits back in.’

He added: ‘The re­sult is that path­ways are be­ing dam­aged and flo­ral trib­utes de­stroyed. I find it ex­tra­or­di­nary that any­one would de­lib­er­ately in­ter­fere with at­tempts to keep rab­bits out of the ceme­tery and urge who­ever is re­spon­si­ble to de­sist. Places of rest should be re­spected, as should the feel­ings of fam­ily mem­bers who wish to visit the graves of their loved ones.’

Kin­tyre and Is­lands coun­cil­lor Alas­tair Red­man has also been con­tacted by up­set fam­i­lies. ‘This is an is­sue the com­mu­nity re­ally cares about. I do hope the coun­cil staff will be al­lowed to do their job, keep the ceme­tery safe and just as vis­i­tors would hope to find it,’ he said.

A spokesper­son for Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil said: ‘Our team on Is­lay has worked hard to pro­tect Kil­naughton Ceme­tery from rab­bits bur­row­ing in from the neigh­bour­ing area. It is shame­ful if some­one is adding to the dis­tress of fam­i­lies by de­lib­er­ately cut­ting the mesh put there to shield graves.

‘We have re­in­stated the mesh and we are us­ing hu­mane traps to catch the rab­bits. If any­one has any in­for­ma­tion about who has van­dalised the mesh, please get in touch with us or the po­lice. We would also ask peo­ple to help by mak­ing sure the gate is shut when vis­it­ing the ceme­tery.’

Rab­bits are get­ting back in through cut mesh­ing to make a mess in the ceme­tery, dig­ging holes.

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