Woman speaks out after memorial bench honouring late mother ‘trashed’ with graffiti

A woman has spoken out after a memorial bench honouring her late mother was ‘trashed’ earlier this month. It is not the first time the family has had to take action after the bench – located on the grounds of Blaise Castle – was defaced.

Nicky Weech, 48, from Kingswood lost her mother to cancer in September 2011 and the bench was commissioned in her memory a year later on the first anniversary of her death. Her mum and dad, Janet and Mike Fleet, who married at 17 and 19, shared many precious moments with their family walking around the grounds.

“They spent all of their courting times up at Blaise,” Nicky said. “Mum was from Henbury and Dad was from Lawrence Weston, so that was their neck of the woods so they would go to Blaise an awful lot.

Read more: Hero dad pulls man from wreckage after crash on M5

As a child, Nicky grew up having picnics and park visits at Blaise Castle, and took her own children there regularly years later. It’s is an important place for the whole family and so there was no question where they would place the bench, which was the first of its kind on the grounds.

“My dad goes there every week, every Friday, and has a coffee on the bench and reflects, looking at the mansion house. He’s got a photo from that scene sitting at the benches as a large canvas in his house as a memento as well. It’s the view he gets when he sits on the seat.”

(Image: Famiy handout)

The family discovered the graffiti on the bench at the beginning of the month, which reads ‘Neil and Kelsey’ with the date ‘02.07.22’ alongside some more rude drawings. Nicky’s father wasn’t able to visit until July 15 after having only just recovered from Covid.

“That seat does mean an awful lot to us and the thought of somebody thinking it’s okay to deface it. We’ve got teenage kids and there is no way they would sit on something they could see meant something to someone else and just decide to scribble on it.

“I just don’t understand why anyone would ever think that is okay to do. It’s devastating. My dad has to go up there every week with his coffee and sit on that.”

Nicky said it wasn’t the first time the bench had been damaged. “Some silly person decided to use it as the base for their disposable BBQ, which then burnt a chunk of it, so we ended up having to turn the seated bit over. We can’t do that again because obviously, it would reveal that burn mark again.”

Since sharing the news on Facebook, a woman who the family did not know previously has come forward to say she would sand down and revarnish the bench. “It’s lovely someone offered to do that with us,” Nicky added.

Nicky, Mike, her daughter, Poppy, the woman and her son are working together to turn the bench back into its former glory. “It’s bringing strangers together in a nice way.”

This time the story has a happy ending, but Nicky said she feared it will only be so long until more damage appears. “The only thing is – how long until some other person goes up there and does it again?”

Up next:

Back to: The Traffic SEOWebsite SEONews and BLOGBristol News

You may also like...