Mum of teen killed in crash's heartache as council removes floral tributes
- Credit: Daniel Hickey/Submitted
The mother of a teenager who died in a motorcycle collision has hit out at a council for removing the flowers she regularly places at the crash site.
In March, 17-year-old Domantas Baksaitis was killed when he crashed into a lamppost on the Great Yarmouth seafront.
Since then, his mother, Jolita Medeliene, has been visiting the site on North Drive, outside the Venetian Waterways, several times every week to leave flowers, light a candle and remember her son.
But, according to the 45-year-old, workers from Great Yarmouth Borough Council keep removing the memorials.
"It is a little bouquet of flowers, not in the way at all, but the council keeps taking them away," she said.
"I put another bouquet on the fence every time they have been removed. Last week I put one there and two days later it was gone."
She said she enquired at Town Hall and found out the flowers were being removed during bin collections and taken to the depot on Churchill Road.
A spokesperson for the borough council said: “Recently it has become necessary to apply our regulations to memorial pieces on highways or council land in order to ensure we offer a safe and accessible area for all residents and visitors.
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“We understand why people leave memorial items for loved ones, and therefore we will continue to undertake the management of these items in a considerate, fair and sensitive way.”
On Tuesday morning (August 3), Ms Medeliene placed another bouquet there, standing the flowers in a plastic bottle attached to the fence. She then lit a candle.
Wiping away tears, she said she was upset and angry.
"It's hard to even speak about it," she added.
She mentioned a similar memorial on a tree on Caister Road.
She added: "Why is one memorial allowed and another is not?"
By Wednesday morning (August 4), the latest bouquet had already vanished.
After Mr Baksaitis died, a vigil set up at the crash site by his friends was broken up by police for breaching coronavirus restrictions that were in place at the time.
More than 100 people had assembled and police arrested four of them under "rave legislation" - a term that was criticised by the teenager's friends who said it was a "socially-distanced vigil".