Derby City Council rules out installing CCTV at Nottingham Road Cemetery

This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.

Derby City Council has said there are "relatively few incidents of theft or vandalism" at a city cemetery after one mum said she had "lost count" of the amount of times items were being taken from her son's grave.

The authority has urged people to keep items on graves at Nottingham Road Cemetery "to a minimum" after the Derby Telegraph highlighted several incidents where sentimental items were taken.

The council also ruled out installing CCTV cameras after previous calls for this to happen to stop the incidents from happening.

A spokesman for Derby City Council said: "We have never had CCTV at any cemetery within the city. Nottingham Road Cemetery alone is 85 acres and there are five other city cemeteries, none of which have an electric supply sufficient to allow camera installation to cover the whole cemetery.

Nottingham Road Cemetery

The Derby Telegraph highlighted several incidents at Nottingham Road Cemetery

"When people visit the cemetery to pay respects to a loved one, they need a certain amount of privacy. There are relatively few incidents of theft or vandalism reported to the cemetery office and families are advised to keep items on graves to a minimum and to never place items of monetary or sentimental value.

"We advise families to report incidents of theft to the police and the local safer neighbourhood team work with us by providing a regular presence in Nottingham Road Cemetery.

"The gates are locked when the cemetery is closed and security patrol the grounds prior to locking the gates every evening."

It comes after the Derby Telegraph told the story of Tracey Bolton, who left toys on the grave of her son, Jamie Godrich, after she returned from holiday.

Days later, she found the items had been vandalised, broken and taken from the grave of Jamie, who died when he was just a few weeks old eight years ago.

Ms Bolton told her story after we reported that precious rosary beads had been taken from the grave of Connor Kelly, who died suddenly at home when he was 19.

Derwent city councillor Richard Hudson said he had observed an increase in incidents there and would be contacting the authority about ways to stop the issues.

Sgt Ed Browne, of Derbyshire Police’s Chaddesden Safer Neighbourhood Team, said he wanted to encourage people to report thefts from the cemetery. He described the crimes as "reprehensible" and said the force would always try to identify those responsible.