Family left heartbroken after being told off by crematorium staff at funeral

A grieving man and his brother were left devastated after they were told off by crematorium staff for moving chairs to comfort their mother at their dad's funeral service.

Craig Bicknell, from Milton Keynes, and his family attended a socially distanced funeral for his father Alan Wright at Crownhill Crematorium on October 2.

CCTV inside the hall shows how Craig, who is sitting in the front row, moves his chair to sit next to his mother and places his arm around her shoulder in comfort.

Another mourner follows suit and moves to sit on his mother's left-hand side.

While the funeral director is conducting the ceremony, a man sitting behind is also seen moving closer to a woman next to him.

But a member of staff quickly interrupts the service and comes in, waving his arms and saying: "Sorry, you have to move the chairs back.

"You can't move the chairs I'm afraid. You were told."

Craig and the stunned guests move back to their original positions as the service continues.

Posting the clip on Facebook, Craig wrote: "I can sit in a restaurant, I can sit in a pub, I can live at her house, I can travel in a limousine to the crematorium with 6.

"But when I want to give my mum a cuddle at dad's funeral, a man flies out mid service shouting stop the service and makes us split…A devastating day made even worse."

He revealed that his father had died from a heart attack in September.

Craig shared the clip to a local community Facebook group and explained that he and brother Paul have been staying with their mother and believed they are within her bubble.

He added: "It scared my daughter and shocked everyone in the room.

"This is not how funerals should be and with the guidelines in place for pubs, bars, public transport etc, how this can carry on at funerals is beyond belief."

A spokesperson for Milton Keynes Council has since apologised and said to improve on the settings for funeral services.

They said: "We are sorry to have upset this family. We don’t usually step in if a guest needs to be comforted by another family member and in this instance should have taken a more considered approach.

"We ask funeral directors to let us know whether any chairs should be grouped in advance, and from now on this includes guests who are in the same household or bubbles, as well as people who need extra support.

"We hope this provides additional comfort at a difficult time."

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