Complaints after water seen being stolen from cemetery

By Tara O’Connor, Local Democracy Reporter

Concerned Croydon residents have called the council after witnessing people driving off with litres of water from a local cemetery.

The council said it was aware of the issue, but added that the huge Mitcham Road Cemetery was difficult to monitor.

Earlier this month, Michael Dettmar spotted one car stop and fill up six large containers by the Thornton Road entrance to Croydon Crematorium, inside the cemetery.

And the 78-year-old said it was not the first time he had seen this happening on his regular walks with his wife around the cemetery.

Mr Dettmar said: “This particular chap was just in an ordinary car. In the back I could see he had several large water containers.

“I thought, that’s a lot to just water flowers on a grave. But then he did a three-point-turn and went out.

“Other times I’ve seen builders using the taps, too. The council has to pay water rates, so everyone that lives in the borough is paying for these guys to take the water. It’s a bit of a cheek.”

Croydon council’s 2022/23 budget included a forecast of £444,000 for supplies and services related to the borough’s two cemeteries, and another £41,000 for what is described as “premises-related expenditure.”

Mr Dettmar said he had spoken to cemetery staff about the issue in the past, and on this occasion reported it to his local councillor, Stuart King.

An email from the council to Cllr King said: “The filling up of large water containers is a problem that we are aware of and we are already taking a proactive response in advising those seen, not to do so.

“The problem we have is that this is a 56 acre site and we cannot always monitor as closely as we would like to”.

Pictured top: Croydon cemetery and crematorium (Picture: Tara O’Connor)

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Everyone at the South London Press thanks you for your continued support.

Former Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing:


If you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can make a donation which will allow us to continue to bring stories to you, both in print and online. Or please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.