A PENSIONER whose grandparents’ graves are so overgrown that she struggles to find them, is calling on the borough council to make improvements.
A section of the Worting Road cemetery is cut infrequently in an effort to provide a place for nature to blossom.
However, the grass, which is waist-high in places, has grown so tall that Anne Clarke, 75, regularly struggles to find the graves of her grandparents, Archibald and Rose Chivers, and has even hurt herself after tripping on a concealed stone.
She visits the cemetery regularly in the spring and summer months but she is often unable to actually find the graves, despite putting artificial flowers on the site in an effort to make it clearer.
Miss Clarke’s grandfather passed away in the 1930s, before she was born, and her grandmother died in the 1970s.
The 75-year-old, of Normanton Road, Oakridge, Basingstoke, said: “I like to visit on special occasions such as Mother’s Day and birthdays, and I would like to come and see them more often.”
She said: “I just want to come and visit their graves, but it’s very hard when I can’t find them. It can take me hours – I end up walking round and round, but the grass is so long that I can’t see anything. It all looks so similar that it is impossible to remember where to go.
“I’m all for nature, but there are limits. It would be a big help if they could at least cut the grass around the individual graves.”
Miss Clarke added: “There are signs on a lot of the graves warning that they are a health and safety danger, but the area full of long grass is far more dangerous. It is impossible to see where you are walking and what is in front of you.”
Tim Boschi, head of community services at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, said: “A wildlife meadow was established as a conservation area in the cemetery some years ago. This is something that is encouraged in older burial grounds to attract birds and wildlife and allow wild flowers to grow.
“This means that we only mow this area at certain times of the year when the birds have finished nesting and the wildflowers have finished flowering.
“If anyone has trouble visiting graves in this area, they should come to the cemetery office, as we would be happy to mow a path to a particular grave or help in any way we can.”