THE FAMILY of a local man whose body was discovered in the River Dee have been left "disgusted" after memorial items were removed from a bridge near where he was found.

Malpas man Martin Gordon, 30, was found dead in the River Dee in Farndon in November after a week-long search to locate him.

And the father-of-two's heartbroken family have since placed some of his close personal items on Farndon bridge as part of a memorial.

But the family have been left gobsmacked after Farndon Parish Council removed the items without warning, placing them in a bin next to the river.

The items include a photo of Martin, and things he was synonymous with - such as a pair of his favourite sunglasses.

Whitchurch Herald:

Martin's brother Simon Gordon told the Leader: "I am absolutely disgusted at this. I can't believe they did this without even contacting the family first.

"For me, you just don't touch items placed there like that - it's clear what they signify.

"Not only have I lost my brother and best mate, I've had to deal with this as well which has left all his family in such a state.

"He was the nicest guy ever and he deserves so much better than this."

Whitchurch Herald:

Farndon Parish Council refused to apologise over the matter, and says some of the items had already been removed by friends of Martin's family.

However, the only items that have been removed are dead flowers - which were replaced with fresh ones.

The parish council also says some of the items were Christmas-related and therefore outdated - referring to red tinsel which Martin's family say isn't anything to do with Christmas.

Simon said: "The red tinsel Martin always kept in his car for years, regardless of the time of the year. It was something he became synonymous with having.""

Simon has now retrieved the items, but only after contacting the parish council to ask what had happened.

He said: "If they [the items] had been there for a year or so, it might be different. But he's only been dead nine weeks and we haven't even had the inquest proceedings yet and therefore received his death certificate.

"So for them to do it now is just hugely disrespectful - I'm lost for words.

"They had to go out of their way to remove the items as they were tied to the bridge - they couldn't have just gone there and picked them up."

Cllr Patricia Fish, chair of the Farndon Parish Council, said: "I don't think we have anything to apologise for.

"Some of the items had already been removed by friends of Martin's family and included dead flowers and Christmas related things. The bridge is also Grade II listed.

I spoke to Simon about this matter and think it has been blown out of all proportion."