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Work started on Edinburgh memorial garden

Work began on Monday on the walled memorial garden at Mortonhall required following the babies’ ashes scandal which rocked Edinburgh Council when first uncovered.

The matter led to a full-scale enquiry led by Dame Eilish Angiolini into the way babies’ ashes were dealt with in Edinburgh and a nationwide inquiry into other crematoria across Scotland.

Parents were asked to choose between four different designs designed to provide a private and peaceful place for personal contemplation.

The walled garden design emerged as the favourite, and will include beech hedges, birch trees, a stone ball water feature, rocks, a pathway and seating and will be located off the existing memorial walkway within easy reach of the main chapel.

There will also be a sensitively designed plaque recording the names of individual babies who have been affected, where parents have indicated they wish their names included.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, Environment Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “I’m sure parents will be pleased to see work starting on the walled garden. It will be a fitting memorial and provide a tranquil area for reflection.”

The Mortonhall Multi-Agency Working Group worked closely with independent garden landscape designers to develop the initial design options. Affected parents were then consulted through an online survey and a series of consultation events hosted by SANDS Lothian, SiMBA, and the Council.

The memorial is expected to be completed in November.

In line with parents’ wishes an alternative memorial is being progressed in Princes Street Gardens.

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