Vicar's pledge to improve condition of Llandeilo graveyard

A FORMER gravedigger has branded the overgrown nature of a Llandeilo churchyard "a disgrace" after he suffered a nasty fall there.

The man, who does not wish to be named, suffered a gash to the face after tripping over a pile of rubble in St Teilo's Church upper cemetery.

"I just went headlong, smashing a flower pot in the process and also breaking my mobile phone," he said. "Thank God I wasn't carrying my scythe at the time.

"I'm appalled at the state of the graveyard which is crying out for a footpath – there are brambles everywhere."

County councillor Edward Thomas said the cemetery was the responsibility of the Parochial Church Council, rather than Carmarthenshire county council or Llandeilo town council.

"I sympathise with this gentleman and I'm trying to facilitate a meeting between him and the vicar," he said. "The area where this accident happened is the oldest part of the graveyard and very overgrown.

"The town council donates a grant to the church every year to help them maintain the graveyard, but they don't have as many funds as they once did."

Llandeilo vicar Rev Michael Sadler said he had been sorry to hear of the incident and was looking forward to having a meeting with the injured man to try and establish exactly what had happened.

"Maintaining the area around the churchyard's more modern graves obviously has to be our priority," he added. "The last maintenance grant we had from the town council was one of £1,500 and – while that was very welcome – it did not cover anywhere near the costs of the upkeep of the cemetery.

"However, a community payback team will be undertaking regular work in the upper churchyard soon and we're confident that they will be able to maintain it to a very high standard."

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