I READ with some interest your article regarding the overgrown state of Huntingdon’s Priory Road cemetery and, while I do not wish to start a ‘who has the worst kept?’ competition for overgrown churchyards and cemeteries, I could not pass up the chance to mention the state of Bluntisham Churchyard.
For several years it has been allowed to overgrow to the point that you take your chances when trying to negotiate the gravestone kerb edging in some areas, as it is virtually impossible to see under the weeds and grasses.
On more than one occasion I have tripped over them, and really have to bite my tongue, remember where I am, and try not to blaspheme or swear out loud in that moment of pain.
Where does the curse of the Health and Safety Executive that seems to be controlling our every move stand on this issue. Or is the church outside its controlling powers?
I have been told that the reason for allowing the churchyard to get into this unkempt state is that it is an area of natural interest and attracts wildlife, and would have to agree that is certainly is wild.
At the rate it is growing I wouldn't be surprised to see bears and wolves lurking around the next time I visit my grandparents' grave.
To respond with the excuses that Mr McIlwain received about Priory Road being allowed to overgrow as a recommendation from Anglia in Bloom, and to suggest that Bluntisham churchyard is an area for wildlife, is in my mind just an excuse for sheer negligence and lack of maintenance in places that should be high on the list for being kept in a tidy condition. I totally agree with Mr McIlwain that to allow these areas to be so neglected is disrespectful.
Little Farthing Close
Editor's note: The Rev Sheila Anthony, Rector of the Meridian parishes, which include Bluntisham, said the wild flowers in an area with conservation status at the front of the church could not be mown until later in the summer. The team of parishioners that looked after the churchyard worked very hard to keep it tidy for the remainder of the year. However, this year's weather had been difficult and the kerbed area was hard to keep tidy.