A GRIEVING son has slammed a “sick” thief after flowers were stolen from his mother’s grave – for the second time.
Trevor Machin makes the 220 mile round journey from his County Durham home to Epworth’s Burnham Road Cemetery several times each year to pay his respects to his late mother, Joyce Taylor.
Mrs Taylor lived in Epworth for most of her 80 years but passed away in February 2010 after a short illness.
Mr Machin, a former Epworth resident, has had a number of floral arrangements securely fitted to his mother’s headstone - only for a heartless thief to twice swipe the tributes.
No other graves were targeted and the wind could not have removed the flowers.
“It makes me feel sick to the stomach that someone should stoop so low to do this kind of thing,” said Mr Machin (57).
“Someone knows who this is and will be enjoying the flowers in their home. It comes to something when people are stealing from the dead.”
The grandfather-of-three said his mother is buried alongside her own father in a family plot and had lovingly tended the grave for many years.
Now Mr Machin shares this responsibility with his three siblings, two of whom still live in Epworth.
“The cost of the flowers does not mean anything, it’s the principle,” he added.
“You wouldn’t think this kind of thing could happen in Epworth but people need to be aware.
“It’s a desecration and there are people who are warped and sick - I hope these people can live with their conscience.”
Mr Machin visited the cemetery to lay another floral tribute ahead of Mrs Taylor’s birthday last Sunday.
He said: “I was very close to my mother and I hope when I return in the summer the flowers will still be there, a little faded, but still there.”
The incident was not reported to police but Mr Machin did inform Epworth Town Council which owns the cemetery.
Council Mayor Margaret Lindley slammed the “mindless behaviour” of the thief.
“This is not something we want to happen,” she added.
“We do not want this kind of thing in our cemetery and we are upset for Mr Machin and distressed that this has happened.
“I can’t think of this ever having happened before but we can’t close the cemetery because it has to be open for people to enter as they please.”