Parents' heartache after baby graves vandalised

Parents' heartache after baby graves vandalised

John Balson

Parents' heartache after baby graves vandalised
Laura Vokes, 20 and son Lloyd by Cameron's grave

Bereaved parents have spoken out after having their hearts broken again by evil vandals who 'violated' their babies' graves.

Vases of flowers were stomped on and toys were stolen from graves during a sickening act of destruction at Braywick Cemetery, Maidenhead, on Wednesday.

The mess was discovered by Laura Vokes, 20, who had only buried her stillborn son Cameron there four weeks before.

"It was hard enough for me to bury my son let alone go down to find that the place where he was laid to rest had been vandalised," said Laura, of Moorbridge Road.

"All I can say is I'm heartbroken."

"I felt disgusted."

A total of eight graves in the baby section were vandalised.

Wooden fences surrounding some were kicked in while others had tributes smashed and scattered about the tranquil site in Braywick Road.

"I felt disgusted to think someone so cold and heartless could do such a thing," added hairdresser Laura, who has visited Cameron's grave every day since the funeral.

"It didn't really sink until I got home later that evening and I thought to myself 'someone has actually trashed my son's grave'."

The former Newlands pupil tidied up the site as best she could to try and spare other visiting parents the same horror.


Fellow mum Jenifer Heneghan, of Furze Platt, whose son Jack Codd's grave was also vandalised, thanked her for this act of kindness.


Her boy died of meningitis in 1998 aged two and tragically had to have three burials after Wexham Park Hospital kept body samples without telling her.

Jack Codd who died in 1998 aged two.

"This is the fourth time the grave has been violated in one way or another," she said.

Jenifer, 35, who has two other children son Tiernan, two, and three-month-old daughter Nuala with husband Kevin, 37, was particularly saddened because Jack's favourite tractors were among the toys stolen.

She urged witnesses to come forward, saying someone knows who is responsible.

The incident took place sometime between 1-8pm on Wednesday and was reported to police by the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead council.

Kevin Mist, head of leisure services, said he was deeply saddened by the 'mindless and callous' vandalism and extended his sympathy to the families.

Police: "These are heartless offences."

Police neighbourhood Inspector John Mckee said: "Given that these incidents relate to children’s graves, these are particularly heartless offences.

"I would appeal to anyone who has information about these incidents to come forward."

Call police with information on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymous on 0800 555111.

* Laura and partner Adam Foster-Poole, 23, who are parents to 16-month-old son Lloyd, are planning a charity walk to the cemetery from Windsor on July 7 to raise money for Tommy's charity, which funds research into stillbirths and miscarriages.

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