THE grieving mum of a three-year-old boy who died of meningitis has spoken of her devastation after council chiefs gave her an ultimatum to stop over-personalising his resting place — just weeks after he was buried.
Connie Button, 21, joined a chorus of criticism about rules which will force parents to remove mementoes honouring their loved ones at cemeteries across Torfaen from Saturday.
Connie’s son, Shae Brynley Button, was laid to rest at Hollybush Cemetery in Cwmbran following his death on April 14.
More than 1,700 people have since signed a petition calling on his grave to be left alone, joining more than 4,600 who have objected to the cemetery policy online.
Torfaen council has apologised to Miss Button for sending her a letter asking her to remove grave items but has so far declined to amend its rules.
Miss Button, of Northville, Cwmbran, said: “I think it’s disgusting. What harm is it doing? I want my little boy’s resting place to be colourful and bright. That’s the person he was. I don’t want no gloomy, run-down place.”
Blaenavon mum Jane Prior is challenging the council, which has asked her to remove a solar light remembering her blind son Jake at Panteg Cemetery.
She said: “Jake died on Mother’s Day last year, aged 10. I’m still not coping with his death. It’s an emotional issue. I understand how Connie is feeling.”
After May 31 decorations not meeting cemetery rules and regulations will be removed by staff, a letter said, to “preserve the dignity of cemeteries” and prevent health and safety implications for grounds maintenance staff. Torfaen’s cemetery rules and regulations can be viewed at http://bit.ly/1fJh3vG
The petition can be found at www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/torfaen
lTorfaen Tigers rugby club plan to raise funds in Shae’s memory when they host Cardiff Spartans on July 5 and are to sell replica jerseys with the writing #ShaeShaesArmy