Concerns about deteriorating state of cemeteries

Councillor Alastair Redman, left, with Donald Cameron MSP.

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A Kintyre and the Islands councillor has joined forces with Highlands and Islands MSP Donald Cameron to highlight the poor upkeep of cemeteries on Islay, with rabbits burrowing into plots at one graveyard.

Councillor Alastair Redman reported that there were also problems at other cemeteries in his ward, including Brackley Cemetery at Carradale.

Councillor Redman said: ‘Perhaps the worst example is Kilnaughton Cemetery, at Port Ellen, where we have a real problem with rabbits digging into some of the plots.

‘This is a graveyard which is still in use and, frankly, local people are becoming distressed at what is happening.

‘There has been some makeshift repairs but the whole site really needs to be made secure with rabbit-proof fencing.’

Mr Cameron said: ‘I understand that Argyll and Bute Council confirmed that it now, at last, has plans in place to address the problems at Kilnaughton, after they were contacted by Alastair.

‘However it remains disappointing that things are allowed to deteriorate to the extent that the maintenance of cemeteries has become a matter of public concern.

‘Frankly, it is very surprising that a cemetery where interments are actually still taking place has been undermined in this way and there must surely be an obligation to ensure this doesn’t happen.

‘My experience is that communities in the Highlands and Islands pay especial regard to the final resting places of fellow members of their communities and will be perplexed to discover that they appear to be uncared for.’