Anguish over stolen ashes

Samantha Randle shows where the pot was taken from in front of her house
Samantha Randle shows where the pot was taken from in front of her house
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A MUM-of-three has been left heartbroken after a pot containing the ashes of three family members was stolen.

The concrete planter has stood outside Samantha Randle’s home for 14 years.

As well as a rose bush it contained the ashes of her grandad Frank Hatton, her grandmother Eva Hatton and her mum Sylvia Shaw.

But she stepped out of her house on Fisher Street, Blackpool, on Friday to discover the pot had gone from its spot in the garden outside her front door.

She told The Gazette: “I know it sounds stupid to have them all in the pot, but it’s a way of being close to everybody.”

She is now appealing for the return of the planter and has reported the theft to the police.

Mrs Randle, 43, who lives with her husband Tony, said: “My grandma had lots of pots in her garden and when my granddad died she put his ashes in one.

“Then when my mum died, she put her ashes in and my grandma requested she be put in too after she died. She had it outside her front door, and she requested I put it outside my front door so they are not forgotten.

“Everyone speaks to it as they pass, and on anniversaries we put flowers around.

“I have lived here 23 years and no-one has taken anything before.

“We’re heartbroken, it’s like we have lost everything again.”

Mrs Randle believes the pot was taken some time between 3am and 8am on Friday.

She said: “It’s an old square concrete pot, with all the paint faded, and it’s very heavy so would take two people to lift.

“We’ve walked round the area and there is no sign of it, and no sign of anything having been smashed or soil having been dropped.

“We were up till about 3am because my husband is a chef and so was winding down after coming in from work but we didn’t hear anything.

“I’m absolutely baffled. All I want is for it to be returned.”

Mr Hatton died 24 years ago, Mrs Shaw died 17 years ago and Mrs Hatton died 14 years ago when the pot was passed into Mrs Randle’s safekeeping. Blackpool Police confirmed there was an investigation ongoing.

A spokesman said: “The incident has been reported to us and we’re looking into it.”

Anyone with any information can contact the police on (01253) 293933.