Graves protest to be held at church

A peaceful protest, to be held outside St Mary’s Church, Pulborough, is planned for Sunday morning, October 7 at 11am.

The event is planned to mark dissatisfaction with the way in which requests for headstones and items for graves have been handled at the church.

“We want to make people aware of the unsatsifactory way in which people have been told at parish level that they can erect certain things- only to have this overturned by Chichester Diocese.”

There have been two incidents at the church within a short period of time.

One required removal of a headstone and in the other, railings erected around an established grave.

In both cases, families imvolved claimed that they had been given verbal permission by the vicar.

Complaints have also been made at St Mary’s Church, Sullington where long established gravestones have been ordered to be removed for contravening Diocesan regulations.

Protestors have stressed that they are holding a peaceful protest, explaining: “We feel this is the only way to get our point accross that Chichester Diocese needs to rethink on the way it handles these matters.”

The claim that a booklet containing what is allowed in graveyards contradicts itself, with conflicting regulations about the same style on different pages within the booklet. At the same time both graveyards already have long-established graves which contradict rules and are allowed to stay.,

“This is causing unecessary stress to grieving families and we want something done.”