Fears of vandalism at open cemetery

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Visitors to a cemetery have raised concerns after the council stopped locking the gates at night.

People with family and friends buried at Mayfield cemetery in Cramlington are worried that vandals will trash the graveyard if the gates are not locked after dark.

One visitor said: “I am amazed that for half an hour’s overtime per day for one worker will make such a difference to the savings Northumberland County Council is looking for.

“Is this a decision taken by a council at a meeting or is it a decision taken by a departmental manager?

“Who will pay for any damage or thefts of property from the plots of loved ones, which has already happened in the past?

“Come on councillors of all parties, please get your heads together or you will cause a lot of worry for a pittance of a saving of three and a half hours a week.”

A spokesperson for Northumberland County Council said: “At the majority of cemeteries across Northumberland, gates are not locked in the evening – and indeed at Mayfield only one set of gates was being locked.

“We will be monitoring the situation after this change.”