Garden centre owner Mel steps in after thefts
KIND-HEARTED garden centre owner Mel Kendall stepped in to help after thieves stole treasured ornaments from the home of a 76-year-old grandmother.
Pot animals and ornaments taken from the garden of Jean Dannatt’s Brampton Bierlow home during the night included a model of a German Shepherd dog bought by her late husband.
Following the thefts, Jean’s son Chris took to Facebook to voice his anger.
Mel saw the post and offered him and his mum the chance to visit Strawbridges Garden Centre in Darfield, for free replacement ornaments for her much-loved garden.
Mel (37), who opened the garden centre in May, said: “One of my friends had shared the post on Facebook and I saw it.
“It was the fact that Jean had Alzheimer’s disease that made me want to help.
“My grandparents – Audrey and Bill – both had it and my grandad was exactly the same as Jean – if you moved anything then it really upset him.
“I just thought as we have got hundreds of garden ornaments we should let her come and have a look.
“They’re not expensive but her ornaments obviously meant a lot to her.”
Jean’s son Chris said: “My mum said she saw a shadow walk past the bungalow window and when she woke up the following morning the ornaments had been stolen.
“They aren’t worth anything at all in monetary terms. The German Shepherd had a hole in it and I don’t think the thieves would even get £1 for it at a car boot sale, but it meant a lot to my mum.
“My dad (John) passed away seven years ago and this has really upset my mum.”
Chris took his mum to Strawbridges last week – following the theft two weeks ago – and Jean was invited to pick her choice of ornaments for free.
He said: “Mum loves her little garden and her ornaments and she was deeply upset about what happened.
“I put a not-so-pleasant post on Facebook about it all and it got shared 87 times. Then Mel sent me a message saying her grandparents had Alzheimer’s and she wanted to help.
“Somebody else collared me in the pub and her daughter is training to be a beautician and is going to give mum a free pampering.
“The response has been amazing and once I told mum about Mel getting in touch she was over the moon.”