Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

Christmas grave decorations

013Christmas is a time when graves frequently receive special attention  and have flowers placed on them.  On on 28 December 2015 many graves in the London Road Cemetery in the London Borough of Merton were covered with colourful – red and white appeared to predominate – displays of, mostly artificial, flowers.

Particularly noteworthy for their flamboyance were the graves of Ronnie Sparrowhawk (died 12 July 2007), a member of a well-known local family of scrap metal merchants; David Hilden (died 9 February 2013), whose headstone is 022decorated with photographs of him with a horse-drawn scrap metal merchant’s cart, and a travellers’ wagon; and Terry Westlake, who died at the age of 54, but whose date of birth is not given on his headstone where he is shown in a photograph holding a horse, so presumably his background was similar to that of Hilden and Sparrowhawk.

Images: upper, grave of Ronnie Sparrowhawk; lower, grave of Terry Westlake.

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