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Family's fury after tributes removed
12:00pm Wednesday 14th August 2013 in News
THE family of rockfall victim Charlotte Blackman are ‘shocked and angry’ after being told their memorial tributes have been removed.
Charlotte’s mother Rachel, dad Kevin and Charlotte's brother and sister, 13-year-old Mitch and Sinead, 21, came back to Freshwater Holiday Park near Burton Bradstock on the anniversary of Charlotte’s death and released butterflies and put flowers, a plaque and teddy bear on her memorial bench.
When they returned home to Derbyshire they were shocked to receive a letter from Freshwater saying they didn’t want the bench turned into a shrine to 22-year-old Charlotte who died on July 24, 2012.
Rachel said: “There is now a massive great big sign put there since explaining that there is danger of death and danger of landslides.
“We laid some flowers by the sign as well as on the bench.”
The family chose and brought the bench there the week Charlotte died and Freshwater was happy to have it there, said Rachel.
“There are other memorial benches there where it has been put.
“We didn’t put an excessive amount of flowers. This letter arrived just saying that it was unsightly and that ‘while we are happy for the bench to remain at Freshwater we don’t think it appropriate for the area around the bench to be treated as a shrine’.
“I was shocked. They basically didn’t want us to leave anything down there at all.
“It was a year to the day we went down there. We released the butterflies at exactly 12.30pm as that is the time the landslide occurred and then we laid the flowers.
“It was something we all felt we wanted to do.”
Scott Condliffe, general manager of the Freshwater, is quoted as saying the holiday park was ‘a business, not a graveyard’.
He has said the park was happy to have the bench even though the accident didn’t happen here – but it was not appropriate in a holiday park to have a shrine.
He said they left the flowers for several weeks before removing them.
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