Fighting to Save the Graves

Above: The gravesite as it is today.
Above: The gravesite as it is today.

On the hill behind Canungra’s main street is an unassuming parcel of land that holds the heart of long term residents.

Right:  Fencing surrounding John Scarborough’s grave was removed and has not yet been restored.

The site contains the remains of John Scarborough and five babies under nine months of age – all of whom have living descendants in Canungra.

One of the descendants, Vicki Rayner purchased the block of land adjacent to the grave site, with the intention of ensuring the site was well maintained.

In 2017 a Conservation Management Plan was prepared, stating that living descendants had been consulted and wished for the graves to remain in their original location and be protected.

One of the recommendations of the plan was a memorial plaque with the names and death dates of the deceased children, however this, along with other recommendations, has not been completed.

Relatives are distressed that the site is being treated by Council as one grave, when family history documents reveal the babies graves were near Scarborough and not in the same plot.

Interred in the unmarked babies’ graves are five grandchildren of Amos Finch:  Jesse Daniels Mahony, Cyril George McVey, Edwin Percy Fitzgerald, McVey baby (stillborn, unnamed), and Donald McVey.

Ms Rayner has been  fighting for four years to have both the Scarborough and Finch babies’ graves restored.

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About Keer Moriarty 116 Articles
Editor, journo, social media manager and tea lady with Canungra Times.