Thank you to those generous Spec readers who stumped up their cash (and their artwork) to raise funds for the legal bill to help save the St Paul’s church and graveyard.
With a modest contribution from The Spec, the fund reached $1165, including the sale of a painting from Lyndsay Brock on TradeMe. Outstanding effort Spec readers!
As mentioned in an earlier article, Gail’s research has led to a geotech team discovering graves that are positioned outside the graveyard; one of which has brought to attention the tragic story of little George Deverall.
One hundred and twenty years ago, eleven-year old George was playing with a toy cannon when the weapon discharged, hitting the little guy in the stomach. He eventually died that year – 1891 – from his injuries, and was buried under the oak tree behind the church. The fence around his plot rotted away over the years and his grave was forgotten until Gail’s kerfuffling led to a geotech survey of the grounds being conducted, and George’s resting place was re-discovered. The surveyors have marked the site of George’s grave with blue paint.
In the process of repairing the graveyard several years ago, ex minister Sherri Weinberg and Gail have both spoken of finding the tragic evidence of smashed graves belonging to other long forgotten children.
If for no other reason, the saving of this land has been worth it just to allow these poor little souls to rest in peace.