A young Grimsby family has donated a special post box to Grimsby Crematorium to help others who are suffering with the loss of a loved one.
Lauren Swales and Jack Lamyman lost their unborn baby boy Teddy to a miscarriage in June when Lauren was four months pregnant.
Together with their nine-year-old daughter Polly, they started a fundraising campaign to install a ‘letters to heaven’ post box for the memorial area in the crematorium grounds.
The post box gives bereaved families somewhere to post messages, drawings, birthday and Christmas cards to their loved ones.
Jack and Lauren said they’d seen similar post boxes in other areas and thought it might help other bereaved families who are coming to terms with the loss of a child.
“We’ve never lost a loved one as close to us before Teddy. This is going to help us a lot and we hope it will help other families who have lost a baby or child.
“I’ve seen people leave cards and notes in the memorial garden, but something like this protects them and helps save them from getting wet.
“We want to come here to post Teddy his first Christmas cards and birthday cards.”
Their daughter Polly was excited to have the honour of posting the first letter in the newly installed post box.
“It has been a difficult time for Polly with her being so young. It’s a really special moment for her.”
“The memorial garden is a wonderful place for people to come and reflect on their loss.
“This means the world to us and we hope it helps other families who have suffered the loss of their precious babies. Although it can be difficult sometimes to know what to say, it helps having somewhere to put your thoughts instead of shouting into a void.”
Bereavement services staff Daniel Intress-Franklin and Augustine Harsent worked with the family to bring the new post box to the crematorium grounds. It’s there for anyone to use to send a message to someone they’ve lost.
“We’re really grateful to the family for making this happen. It’s a wonderful addition to the grounds and we’re pleased to have been able to help.”
Cllr Stewart Swinburn, cabinet member with responsibility for bereavement services, added:
“Dealing with loss is never easy. The bereavement services team are there to help and support people through this difficult time.
“Losing a loved one can be devastating. Everyone grieves differently and people need different types of support at different times.
“I’m thankful to Lauren, Jack and Polly for coming to us with their lovely idea for the post box, and to all the generous donors who contributed to their fundraising campaign.
“I hope the new post box helps provide some comfort to other families who have experienced the loss of a loved one.”
Dealing with loss
Dealing with a loss is never easy. North East Lincolnshire Council’s bereavement services offers care and support to bereaved loved ones. More details at www.nelincs.gov.uk/births-marriages-and-deaths/bereavement-services/dealing-with-a-death/
- Child Death Helpline: www.childdeathhelpline.org.uk/
- Miscarriage Association: www.miscarriageassociation.org.uk/
- Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Charity (SANDS) https://www.sands.org.uk/
- NHS Child bereavement: www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/children-and-bereavement/
- Child Bereavement: www.childbereavementuk.org or call 0800 0288840