THE ONLY SHEEP TO COLLECT AN ABSO
I am a Stroud girl and lived in Chalford for many years until I got married and moved to Gloucester. My family still live in Stroud and when my dear Gran died a few years ago she was buried in Horns Road cemetery.
Last year I planted up a small bowl of crocus bulbs and when they were about an inch or so tall they were placed on the grave and we looked forward to seeing them bloom. The day after Mum phoned me to say that something had dug out all the bulbs and the debris was scattered all around the grave leaving a lot of mess for her to clear up.
A few months ago she told me that people were getting cross that flowers on the graves were being eaten and a local sheep was getting the blame!
The sheep is called Colin and his owner is Treena De Buriatte. Colin, who is a cross between a Cotwold and Jacob, was rescued as a lamb and has been reared by Treena and has been brought up as a pet. He is now 9 months old and lives with Treena along with three dogs and four cats. He likes Rich Tea biscuits and Walkers crisps but still enjoys his ‘bottle’. A local farmer contributes by giving him some hay. He used to live in the house but got too big so now lives in a shed in the garden and ‘knocks’ to be let in.
Colin is taken for his daily walk around the ‘old cemetery’, which is not part of the ‘new’ cemetery where the flowers were being eaten, along with her three dogs.
A lot of people complained about the flowers and assumed it was Colin so Stroud Town Council decided that Treena was acting in an anti-social way by letting Colin eat the flowers. An Anti-Social Behaviour Co-ordinator official warned Treena that Colin was to be banned from the cemetery and also said that Colin should be kept on a lead. She was also reminded that Colin was only licensed to live in her garden and maybe Trading Standards and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) should be informed!
Colin must be the first sheep to have an ASBO (Anti-social behaviour order).
This made no difference as flowers were still being eaten and guess who was blamed – Colin again!
Treena again said ‘Colin has nothing to be sheepish about it wasn’t him’.
It wasn’t until two deer were spotted in the cemetery eating roses that Colin was cleared of this crime.Apparently, the deer belong to Princess Michael of Kent who lives in nearby Lypiatt.
At long last Colin is now free to wander the ‘old cemetery’ on his daily walks.
I went over to see Colin recently and a nicer sheep you could not wish to meet! He comes to you when called and really seems friendly. All the local dogs seems to know him and you can see that he is used to dogs as he does not bother with them. As he has never met another sheep maybe he thinks that he is a dog. I took Pixel, my collie cross dog, with me and she was more worried about Colin than he was of her.
Now that he is cleared of any blame maybe Colin will be allowed to roam the cemetery on his daily walks with Treena and her dogs.
I planted some primroses yesterday on my Gran’s grave and scattered some garlic bulbs round them, that is supposed to help keep deer away, but I am expecting a phone call from my mum any day now to say that the flowers have been eaten!
What the council is going to do about the wall jumping deer only time will tell.