Yobs trash memorial garden dedicated to young boy killed in fall

A Bootle dad expressed his dismay after yobs vandalised a memorial garden dedicated to his six-year-old son who died in a tragic accident.

Steve White, 64, spent thousands on creating a garden that celebrated the life of his little boy, Martin.

Martin fell from a school roof in Bootle while out playing with his pals 30 years ago, and was rushed to hospital but later died from his injuries.

Steve wanted to create a space that both remembered his son and provided locals with an oasis in the heart of the Knowsley Road community.

But last week Steve was shocked to find that the green space, off Bulwer Street, had been vandalised.

He said: “I went around last Tuesday to have a look and it was in bits. Broken glass, plants tore out of the ground and ceramics smashed.

“I was really taken a back by the extent of the damage. I just thought ‘why?”

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Steve spent 25 years waiting for the land to become available for the project so close to his heart.

He was assisted by his then partner June Pritchard, who came up with the idea of a green space inspired by Martin.

Sadly June, who was not Martin’s mum, died from cancer before the garden was opened in 2016.

Picture of Steve White’s son Martin who the memorial garden is named after.
(Image: Liverpool Echo)

Steve said: “Sadly June never got to see the garden that she worked so hard to bring to life. It was for her too and his vandalism makes it all the more upsetting.

“The garden is not just for my family but for the Bootle community. We live in such stressful times and it was the perfect sanctuary where people could just sit down and unwind.

“And kids were welcome to play there too. Martin loved to play – he was just a typical Bootle kid that loved to run around and have adventure with his mates. He was a cracking little fella.”

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Steve, who recently lost his 90-year-old dad Jimmy, said that he determined to revive the garden.

He said: “Yes I will repair the damage and create something new again. Not just for Martin and June, but for the locals. But I think we need to get some CCTV fitted to stop this happening again. ”

Police confirmed they were investigating reports of criminal damage at the memorial garden.

Officers believe the damage was caused some time between noon on December 7 and noon December 8.

Sefton Community Policing Chief Inspector Mike O’Malley said to the ECHO : “It is absolutely abhorrent that someone should cause damage to such a heartfelt and painstakingly constructed memorial.

“We’re keen to hear from anyone who might have seen a person or person acting suspiciously in the area of Bulwer Street, close to its junction with Knowsley Road, early last week.

“If you live nearby and think you may have captured the perpetrator on home CCTV, dashcam or other devices, please check and let us know. We’ll all we can to put those responsible before the courts.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact police via the social media desk @MerPolCC on Twitter or ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ on Facebook with reference 20000746014, or call the independent charity @CrimestoppersUK anonymously on 0800 555 111.

You can also contact them via their online form here.

Liverpool Echo – Liverpool News