Shock as plaques for boys are taken from Eastbourne memorial garden

Photo by Jon Rigby
Photo by Jon Rigby

The family and friends of four Shinewater boys who died young are devastated plaques dedicated in their memory have been removed.

The plaques to commemorate Sean Pearce-Weston, Zachary Whitington and Lewis and Taylor Jenkins are thought to have been stolen from their memorial garden in Milfoil Drive.

Before: The plaque for Taylor and Lewis Jenkins who died in a tragic fire

Before: The plaque for Taylor and Lewis Jenkins who died in a tragic fire

Cassandra Pearce lost her son Sean, known to many as ‘Bubs’, 15 years ago when he died in a road collision aged just eight. Her daughter Sabrina fundraised with her school to create the garden which is next to the Ian Gow Memorial Centre.

But the mother said she was shocked when she returned from holiday just weeks ago to hear the plaque to him had been taken.

“I just thought, oh my God,” she said, “We’re trying to figure out what happened. It’s been there for so long. I think it’s malicious. It’s awful.”

She says since the incident there has been an outpouring of support from the community. She said, “I just want to say thank you to the community again, people who helped raise the money the first time and now a second time.

Photo by Jon Rigby

Photo by Jon Rigby

“A huge thank you to the lads at the Martello who have raised £115 towards a new plaque.”

Rachael Carson originally arranged a sponsored walk to raise money for the plaques for brothers Lewis and Taylor, who died in a house fire in 2008 aged just seven and five.

Their plaques were taken last Friday. She said, “I’m absolutely disgusted. They’re not worth anything to anyone else. We are thinking of replacing them with wooden ones in the future.”

The plaque for Zachary Whitington, who died in his sleep just before his 16th birthday, was also taken.

A crowdfunding page has been set up by Linda Carey to raise money to replace the plaques and improve the memorial garden.

Her husband Steve is running 100 miles to raise money for it, available here.

Read more:

Fire tragedy boys Taylor and Lewis are laid to rest

Sean, eight, dies in motorbike crash

Party goes on to honour Zac