News read­ers slam coun­cil’s ‘lack of re­spect’

Coun­cil:No ev­i­denceof sub­si­dence

East Kilbride News - - NEWS -

The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment is pre­par­ing new guid­ance on safety in­spec­tions in ceme­ter­ies.

The move comes after the tragic death of eight-year-old Ciaran Wil­liamson, who was killed while play­ing with friends in Craig­ton ceme­tery in Glas­gow in May 2015.

A fa­tal ac­ci­dent in­quiry (FAI) found his death could have been avoided if safety pre­cau­tions had been taken in the ceme­tery.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil told the News it has an es­tab­lished pro­gramme in place to test head­stones.

Fully-trained op­er­a­tives use a‘top­ple-test’method and, if deemed to be un­safe, will lay the head­stone flat and cor­don off the sur­round­ing area or‘trench in’ the head­stone.

Around 20,000 head­stones have been checked in South La­nark­shire in the past two years alone.

Com­ment­ing on the lat­est com­plaint this week, Alis­tair McKin­non, head of fa­cil­i­ties, waste and grounds ser­vices, said:“Dur­ing a rou­tine safety in­spec­tion this head­stone was found to be un­safe and was se­cured.

“There is no ev­i­dence of any sub­si­dence in this area, rain has washed away soil around the base of the head­stone and due to a shal­low foun­da­tion it has be­come un­safe.

“South La­nark­shire Coun­cil will re­place the foun­da­tion at no charge, how­ever, it is the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the cus­tomer to in­struct a me­mo­rial ma­son to re-erect the head­stone and pay for this work.

“South La­nark­shire Coun­cil has not changed its po­si­tion. It is es­tab­lished pol­icy to cover the cost to in­stall new foun­da­tions where the head­stone is un­safe due to the pre­vi­ous foun­da­tion fail­ing.” The‘eye­sore’sig­nage at Philip­shill Ceme­tery has been slammed by News online read­ers.

Har­ley Mathieson posted: “As it’s your re­spon­si­bil­ity to make sure the head­stone is prop­erly main­tained the coun­cil would say it is only do­ing its job to warn – but in such a job­swor­thy man­ner.

“I would ex­pect that even a small head­stone would cause dam­age but I do agree that this could per­haps be han­dled in a less crass fash­ion.

“Can’t imag­ine there is much risk of kids play­ing in Philip­shill grave­yard ei­ther. Don’t see them putting signs up or lay­ing down stones at the Ne­crop­o­lis or other fa­mous grave­yards ei­ther so I think it’s a bit of an over­re­ac­tion.”

Craig Arch­bold said:“The stone for my late mother and sis­ter was one of them. As usual, coun­cil does things the wrong way round – to­tally dis­re­spect­ful to those laid to rest and the fam­i­lies left be­hind.

“Let­ters should’ve been sent and an op­por­tu­nity to rec­tify the is­sues, not stick five-inch posts smack bang in mid­dle of loved-ones’head­stones. South La­nark­shire Coun­cil should be ashamed of them­selves.”

Mandy Pen­man wrote:“Bit of a cheek con­sid­er­ing how lit­tle they main­tain the town. As coun­cil tax pay­ing mem­bers of the pub­lic, can we put signs up where SLC clearly aren’t both­er­ing their back­side?”

How­ever, Elaine Cur­rie backed the move and said:“I think they’re right to stake them when un­safe. I 100 per cent sym­pa­thise with the fam­i­lies but best to tend to it be­fore fur­ther dam­age oc­curs.”

Bernie McCamp­bell added: “We found the stake at our fam­ily head­stone a cou­ple of weeks ago and the cost from the stone­ma­son to make it safe is £250 plus VAT.

“I was up­set to see it like that but re­alised that if it was un­safe then any­one com­ing any­where near it needs to know that.

“We would be dev­as­tated if any­one got hurt from it.

“I do think let­ters should have been sent out to the fam­i­lies, though, to make them aware of what is go­ing on, so not as much of a shock.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.