Community's support for Hartlepool couple as fundraiser launched to replace headstone on baby's grave

Well-wishers are collecting money online to replace a baby’s headstone after it was damaged by vandals.

Sunday, 7th July 2019, 12:32 pm
Anna and Carl Gorse say the attack on the grave of their infant son Aston is only the latest.

Aston Gorse was delivered stillborn on July 16, 2012.

Anna, 33, said: “Our son passed away in 2012 and every year since then, just before his birthday, his grave has been damaged.

Disgusted and distraught: Anna and Carl Gorse at the vandalised grave of their baby son Aston.

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“His gravestone has been smashed and a plaque that is in a planter has also been totally smashed. Since then I have been sick with the emotion of it.”

Carl, 39, added: “It’s disgusting, you wouldn’t do it to anybody.”

They hope to move the grave to another part of the cemetery and want CCTV to be installed to catch and deter vandals. They say this would cost around £10,000 and will speak to the council about it.

A group called the People's Community Project (PCP) have now set up a JustGiving page, where people can make online contributions towards a replacement headstone for Aston. They have a £2,000 target.

The page said: “Some vile individual has again targeted his headstone and damaged it. Aston’s Birthday is on the 16th of July, and his Mam and Dad have the soul destroying experience of seeing his grave unmarked.

“PCP are going to help support the family by fundraising for a replacement headstone. So we ask the people of Hartlepool to do what you always do and help those in need. Please give anything you can on our page.”

Anna wants to thank everyone who is supporting the couple, and said: “We’re very grateful for any help we can get and happy that people want to help.

“The gentleman who set it up has visited us and wants to organise some other events.”

To contribute to Aston’s new headstone, visit