After my previous correspondence, I recently revisited Glynde churchyard from Canterbury and was delighted to find that both it, and the daffodil bank had been cleared.
However, I was less delighted to see in your paper a reply from the Revd Peter Owen Jones where he justified the neglected state on environmental grounds and stated that “insects have much to teach us about being human and that I am with the butterflies”.
I think for butterflies – read ‘fairies’. When an elderly relative is unable to reach the grave of her husband, where graves and stones of people who fought for their country disappear beneath long grass, brambles and weeds, then I respectfully wonder just how ‘human’ the Revd is.
It was quite noticeable that since my last visit, and the churchyard being cleared, there were many, many more colourful floral tributes on view and other families must have been grateful for this.
Because of the Revd’s letter, I took it on myself to visit the churchyards in all of his parishes – Glynde, Beddingham and Firle. Glynde had improved since my initial complaint. Beddingham, just like Glynde was, was in a terrible overgrown state with tombstones barely visible.
Whereas, in the Revd Peter Owen Jones village of Firle, the churchyard was immaculate and cared for. It would appear that what the Revd preaches does not necessarily have to be practised.
Could it be that he feels letting graveyards become wildernesses is fine for everybody else as long as it is not in his back (church)yard.
Instead of criticising us that care for the dead, why does he not do something positive for something he obviously cares about.
If you enter Glynde churchyard from the top gate nearest the church, there is a long bank on the left running up to a building. Wild flowers could be planted in this quite large area which could become an attractive haven for wildlife.
I am only able to visit irregularly and, although over 70, work hard to ensure the graves and headstones look, and are, cared for.
Go around your parishes Revd, not just Firle, and see what needs to be done, and then what could be done. Do not criticise us that do actually do something.