Row over site of baby ashes memorial in Shrewsbury

Image copyright Lottie O'Leary
Image caption Stone carver Lottie O'Leary is designing the memorial stone, which is proposed to include a dandelion and a baby lying on a hand

Parents whose babies' remains were lost are angry at a move to change the planned location of a memorial.

It was thought it would be put in the Dingle, in Shrewsbury's Quarry park. But it is understood Shrewsbury Town Council has concerns the design is not in keeping with that site.

Bereaved father Glen Perkins said the decision was "offensive".

The stone will remember 60 children whose remains were lost after cremation in Shrewsbury between 1996 and 2012.

In an official statement, Shrewsbury Town Council said: "We've been having ongoing discussions and as far as we're concerned there was a good solution for everybody."

The town council had discussed putting a permanent memorial in flower garden the Dingle.

After an original design by stone carver Lottie O'Leary was rejected by families, a new version, depicting a dandelion resting on a hand holding a baby, was "accepted by pretty much every parent", said Mr Perkins.

The Dingle flower garden in Shrewsbury Image copyright Shrewsbury Town Council
Image caption The Dingle is an ornamental flower garden in Shrewsbury's Quarry Park

Mr Perkins, who created campaign group Action for Ashes after his daughter Olivia's ashes were lost, claimed the council objected to the depiction of a baby in the new design.

"I find that offensive, I really do find that offensive that they chose not to take that design.

Baby Olivia Image copyright Glen Perkins
Image caption Glen Perkins, the father of Olivia, said the family were told before the funeral there would be no remains

"They totally kicked us in the teeth halfway through," he said.

Shropshire Council, which is paying for the stonework, is now consulting parents on an alternative location in the cloisters at Longden Road cemetery.

Councillor Rob Gittins said the new option had emerged during a meeting involving families.

Helen Ball, from Shrewsbury Town Council, said: "The cloisters at Longden Road cemetery is a wonderful location in which families can have the peace and quiet and time for reflection they rightly deserve."

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