Distraught South Shields family blast council chiefs for leaving mum's graveside looking '˜like a jungle'
Olwyn Fox was hit so hard by the sudden death of mum Geraldine from a brain aneurysm in 2007 that she was felt unable to visit her grave at Harton Cemetery.
The 29-year-old finally plucked up the courage to defeat her demons and pay her respects to her much-loved mum - only to find her grave covered by an overgrown tree.
The site was in such a state of neglect she was unable to navigate her way through the tree branches, plants and blades of grass in order to lay flowers at the plot.
Miss Fox, from Livingstone Place, South Shields, says South Tyneside Council should be ‘ashamed’ for failing to maintain the precious spot.
Miss Fox said: “South Tyneside Council need to be ashamed of themselves. I walked past the grave at first as you could’t see it.
“I couldn’t even lay down flowers at the graveside.
“I lost my beloved mother 9 years ago and it has taken me so long to be able to go and see her.
“I think that so it shows this council doesn’t care about our dead love ones.
“I pay my council tax in full every year and it makes me think that no money is being spent at all on looking after the cemetery.”
Dad Arthur Fox, who was married to Geraldine for 30 years is shocked that the plot has been left to run wild for so many years.
Mr Fox said: “It was a big step for Olwyn to finally go to her mum’s grave.
“She just go said one day that she was going to go up to the cemetery.
“She brought flowers with her but had to lay them on another relative’s grave.
“The spot just looks like a jungle.
“It is such a pity that this has been allowed to happen.”
South Tyneside Council says it has taken ‘swift action’ to resolve the issue.
A council spokesman said: “Now that this issue has been brought to our attention we have taken swift action to resolve it.
“We have already alerted our tree team to the overgrown tree who are sending someone to investigate the matter.
“We can only apologise for any additional distress that this may have caused.”