Lisa slams grave fee as ‘rip-off’

Lisa Elliott of Farlam Avenue at North Shields, complaining about the lack of support from social services.
Lisa Elliott of Farlam Avenue at North Shields, complaining about the lack of support from social services.
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A HEARTBROKEN daughter has slammed the extra £1,000 bill she faces for a graveyard plot next to her late mother as a rip-off.

Lisa Elliott will be left hundreds of pounds out of pocket if she is buried beside her mum just because she lives in North Tyneside and her mum’s grave is in Newcastle.

The 58-year-old faces a bill for £1,800 for a plot beside her mum Gloria in Heaton Cemetery.

If she lived in Newcastle, however, it would cost her less than half as much – £800.

Gloria left her home in Heaton last year and moved into Lisa’s bungalow in Farlam Avenue, North Shields, for support during her battle with breast cancer.

The 83-year-old finally lost her fight for life while being looked after at Wallsend’s Hadrian House care home in March.

Now Lisa, a multiple sclerosis sufferer also facing her own fight against breast cancer, is trying to secure her grave in the family plot but is struggling to afford the fee.

“I just think it’s wrong,” she said. “You live in an area which is only a few miles away and you have to pay £1,000 more.

“They talk about rip-off Britain. This is it.

“I just wanted to be near my mum and dad and my grandparents.

“If I had known about it, I would not have moved to North Tyneside.”

A spokesman for Newcastle City Council said: “The council understands and sympathises with the issues raised by Miss Elliott.

“Unfortunately, however, the fees and charges issues she refers to reflect the position in place across the majority of the country.

“Each council puts in place arrangements which reflect the needs of their own particular services and establishes a fees and charges structure accordingly.

“Unfortunately, as part of this, an additional charge is applied in circumstances such as the one Miss Elliott refers to.”

North Tyneside Council declined to comment.