Heartless thieves stole wreaths from graves at Ayr Cemetery at one of the most difficult times of the year for grieving families.
After receiving complaints from families who had placed wreaths at graves around the cemetery and then found they had disappeared, South Ayrshire Council stepped in to ask for the public to help in identifying those responsible.
Councillor Ian Cochrane, portfolio holder for the environment, said: “This is a mindless act by heartless thieves who are, quite simply, the lowest of the low – hitting families at what is always a difficult time of the year.
“At South Ayrshire Council, we work hard to support grieving families at Christmas with our dedicated candlelight se rvice and do all we can to ensure our cemeteries provide a place of comfort and solace.
“These pointless thefts only serve to make the festive period even more of a struggle for these families and my heart goes out to them.”
One family affected was that of Alan Kennedy from Ayr, who was killed in a road accident in Ayr in January 2005.
Alan’s wife Lilian discovered the theft of two family wreaths from her husband’s grave when she visited the cemetery to lay her own festive tribute.
Lilian said: “I always have flowers at Alan’s grave, visit the cemetery regularly and knew that the family had started to lay this year’s wreaths ahead of Christmas. I was shocked when I got there and there was no sign of them and after telling the cemetery staff, I discovered there had been numerous thefts within the cemetery.
“I cannot understand why anyone would want to take something that has been laid in memory of someone who has passed away, especially at this time of year. It’s a truly disrespectful and despicable act – affecting more than just our family – and I hope people can help catch the heartless individuals responsible.”
Councillor Cochrane added: “I would urge anyone with information to contact the police on 101.”