Anger as tragic teen’s memorial garden trashed

James Goodship Memorial Garden.
James Goodship Memorial Garden.

The family of James Goodship, who drowned in Foulridge reservoir, have been left devastated after his memorial garden was vandalised last weekend.

Colne teenager James (17) died in June last year at Burwain Sailing Club after he and his friends built a raft and James tried to swim to shore but got into difficulties.

The community rallied around to raise funds for a headstone, a memorial garden and the family are hoping to instal lifesaving equipment at Lower Foulridge Reservoir soon.

The memorial garden for the former Park High School student was officially opened in March this year next to Colne Citadel with his mum Mel, dad Pete along with family and friends helping to decorate the memorial.

PHOTOS from the opening event - here

However, Mel said she was heartbroken on Sunday to find the garden had been vandalised.

James Goodship

James Goodship

“I can’t believe someone would stoop so low,” said Mel.

“My step son had been on Saturday to the memorial garden, which is used by family, friends and the community to remember James, and all was fine.

“Then he went on Sunday and it had been trashed. We found that the plants had been ripped up, thrown around and trampled on and all the plaques, ornaments and keepsakes had been stolen.

“We were devastated. So many people had spent time and effort creating a garden for the community to use and it defies belief that someone would do this.

So many people had spent time and effort creating a garden for the community to use and it defies belief that someone would do this

Mel Goodship

“Fortunately we did recover the majority of the items as they had been stashed in undergrowth nearby, seemingly for someone to pick up later.

“They weren’t even worth much, it was all sentimental value. Friends and family had put the items there to remember James and it’s just devastating.

“Other gardens were said to be targeted in the area so it did come as some comfort that they weren’t specifically targeting James or our family but it still hurts.”

Police are appealing for witnesses to call 101 if they have any information, log number 0989 2nd August.

Watch the hard-hitting video James’s family helped to make to stop others experiencing their heartache - here