Mum’s heartbreak at doll grave theft

Emma-Louise Lowe with daughter Elsie at Chorley Cemetery, where her daughter Molly's  grave has been damaged and items stolen
Emma-Louise Lowe with daughter Elsie at Chorley Cemetery, where her daughter Molly's grave has been damaged and items stolen

A heartbroken mum has made a plea for items stolen from her baby’s grave to be returned.

Emma-Louise Lowe, from Treales Road, Treales, discovered the grave of stillborn daughter Molly at Chorley Cemetery in Southport Road had been interfered with when she visited on Saturday.

All the Christmas ornaments had gone, a little money box I’d put there, but with no money inside it, was smashed and a doll I’d given to her had gone

She said: “All the Christmas ornaments had gone, a little money box I’d put there, but with no money inside it, was smashed and a doll I’d given to her had gone.

“At first I thought it might be the wind, but the ornaments on other children’s graves were still there, and I couldn’t find anything lying around.”

The mum-of-six said she is most upset about the missing doll and has launched a social media campaign for it to be returned to the grave.

The 34-year-old said: “I loved that doll when I was a child and I wanted to give it to my daughter. I’m regretting putting it there now, but I didn’t think this would happen. It’s just a little old-fashioned rag doll with beads in it and wool in platted pigtails. I’ve written ‘To Molly from Mummy’ on the bottom of it. “It’s not worth anything in terms of money, but I’m heartbroken.”

Miss Lowe has regularly visited the grave following Molly’s death in Chorley Hospital in March 2011.

She added: “I’m angry, but mostly just heartbroken that this has happened in such a beautiful, peaceful place.”

A spate of thefts from the cemetery in 2011 prompted Chorley Council to close the cemetery gates from 7pm to 8am daily. Coun Adrian Lowe, who oversees cemeteries for Chorley Council, said: “It is very upsetting when something like this happens and I can fully understand just how distraught Miss Lowe and her family must be. We do lock the post and chain at night to deter people from going into the cemetery after dark, and the vast majority of people respect this. There is no excuse for this type of mindless vandalism and I do hope that those who have committed this act will feel remorse, and that they do at least return the doll.”