Anger over state of Penryn cemetery
Ten years after first appearing in the pages of the Packet , one Penryn man is again taking a stand against the state of a town cemetery.
Paul Fehrenbach, who turns 76 next week, has spent more than four decades tending the graves of his family – and the war memorial - in the Old Penryn Cemetery at the end of Love Lane.
He took up this mantel voluntarily from his father, who died in 1970, and at least once a week he goes to the graveyard to mow the grass and cut the edges.
He said: “As far as Cornwall Council are concerned this is what they call a closed cemetery [not open to new burials] so they are not interested.
“They come here roughly six or seven time a year and cut [the grass] and that’s it.”
Ten years ago Mr Fehrenbach was dismayed at the lack of care the now disbanded Carrick Council were giving the cemetery.
For a while, the situation did improve, with more regular clearances of undergrowth and cutting of grass, but the site has not “started going back to where it was,” he said.
“I have asked them on the phone ‘are you telling me that a 76 year old man has to clean up the mess you have made?’ “While I’m alive I will do it, but what happens after I die – God only knows.”
A spokesperson for Cornwall Council said “recent poor weather conditions” had led to the “accelerated growth in the grass in many of our cemeteries and churchyards.”
She added: “We are working with our service provider in making every effort to maintain these sites to a suitable high standard within the constraints of the budgets available.
“Unfortunately, the financial position we have been placed in by central government means we have been forced to make further savings from our budget for the maintenance of our cemeteries.
“However, we recognise that the provision of cemeteries is important and we are doing everything we can to minimise the impact of this reduced budget.”