Before the actual funeral we always check the grave for correct placement (and sizing!); often we would line it with hay, or leaves, or lavender – even soft branches – anything to soften the rather austere looking clay/shale floor. Checking the grave at Gloucester Woodland Cemetery just before the funeral we noticed movement in the grave bottom – and saw a bright green frog hopping about. We could never in good conscience have lowered a coffin on to it, so there was nothing for it but to jump down into the grave and liberate it back into the long grass beyond the green astroturf surrounding the grave. An ungainly scramble getting out: but the family were amused, I think.

On checking with Gloucester Cemetery Authority, it seems that they always check the grave for any wildlife that may have inadvertently taken up residence.

What a kindly, necessary practice on their part ….. what a great team!

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