Drivers urged to respect the dead

Old Aisle Cemetery
Old Aisle Cemetery

A man who visited an East Dunbartonshire cemetery on Christmas Day was left stunned after seeing cars drive over graves.

The resident, who was visiting a family grave in the Old Aisle Cemetery, in Kirkintilloch, said he was “appalled by the behaviour of some visitors to the cemetery”.

He claims motorists were driving over graves to get past other cars parked on the road inside the cemetery.

And he fears the graves may be damaged as a result.

East Dunbartonshire Council say there is adequate parking at the Old Aisle just a short walk away from graves, and only blue badge holders are allowed to take cars into the cemetery.

The resident said: “On past visits I have noticed tyre marks on graves, particularly those graves adjacent to the internal road.

“Having witnessed those cars on Christmas Day I now know why those tyre marks are there.

“The tyres are digging up the soil and, in some cases, unsettling the graves.

“These people are driving through the cemetery because they are too lazy to park their cars in the car park and then walk a few yards.

“They then find their way blocked by some other lazy person who has stopped their car on the internal roadway, so they proceed to drive their cars over the graves to get past them.

“The whole situation is despicable. These people would rather vandalise a row of graves than park their cars and walk a short distance.

“They are also blatantly ignoring the large sign which highlights only people with a disabled badge are allowed to enter the cemetery by car.”

The concerned family member has reported the matter to East Dunbartonshire Council.

He added: “This is an awful situation and distressing for those with loved ones buried in those graves which are being desecrated.

“It is plainly disrespectful and should not be allowed to continue. Something needs to be done about it - and quickly.

“A sign, for people to ignore, is simply not enough. There should be some penalty for those who do this and a better way to monitor whether those driving in to the cemetery are indeed unable to walk to the grave they are visiting.”

East Dunbartonshire Council has appealed to people to obey the rules.

Keith Scrimgeour, roads and neighbourhood services manager, said: “Sadly, this can be a problem at this time of year and is, I’m afraid, down to careless and perhaps impatient drivers.

“There is adequate parking at Old Aisle Cemetery just a short walk away from graves, with only blue badge holders being allowed inside the cemetery.

“We will assess the damage to grass and graves and reinstate damaged areas as soon as possible. Once again I would appeal to people to follow the cemetery rules and show courtesy and respect to graves and other mourners.”