Grieving daughters have spoken out and slammed the local council for fining them $250 because they were paying their final respects to their deceased father for 48 seconds too long.
As Mandy Pinney and Hayley James explained, they wanted to touch their father’s coffin for one last time before the funeral service ended.
According to the sisters, they reserved a 40-minute slot which they exceeded by only 48 seconds while paying their respects at the Grimsby Crematorium in North East Lincolnshire.
As the sisters added, they made sure no one was waiting outside to get in when they approached their father’s coffin for the last time.
Following their actions, however, the North East Lincolnshire Council mailed them a bill demanding they pay $250 for exceeding the time reserved for the funeral service.
“After the main service my sister and I wanted to touch dad’s coffin one last time and close the curtain,” Hayley expressed.
“Staff at the crematorium watched us. We were taken to the coffin by the funeral director and they watched us the whole time.
“I could understand it if we were five or 10 minutes over our time. But just by seconds is petty and disrespectful.
“If they are going to time people and impose fines for going over by just a few seconds, how do they know whose watch is right?”
Speaking of the controversial fine, Ms. James added:
“I know they are a business and they need to organize times for everyone using the crematorium every day. But for us this is the only time in our lives we have to do it.
“We wanted to spend just a few last moments with our dad because the funeral service was so full. So we went back very briefly at the end.
“The amount of the fine is insignificant. But the lack of compassion and understanding leaves much to be desired.”
After the sisters’ story went viral, people lashed out at the council and branded them insensitive. Following the backlash, the spokesman for the North East Lincolnshire Council responded and said:
“We’re going to look into this complaint and review the overall policy as soon as we can, but on the majority of occasions, the Council works well with funeral directors to make sure services run as smoothly as possible.
“As the policy stands, a charge is imposed on the funeral director if service at the Crematorium over-runs. Funeral directors manage the proceedings and it is at their discretion whether or not to pass this charge to their client.
“They have the option to book additional time and the majority of funeral directors use that option when planning a service.”
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