‘Heartbroken’ brothers speak of anger after being stopped from comforting mum at dad’s funeral due to Covid rules



A council has apologised after two brothers were stopped from comforting their mother during their father’s funeral.

Craig and Paul Bicknell had been attending their father’s funeral in Milton Keynes, but family and friends had to sit two metres apart during the service to adhere to coronavirus regulations.

But, when the pair noticed their mother becoming visibly upset, they picked up their chairs and moved closer to comfort her.


However, an official swiftly walked into the room and interrupted the service to tell them to move back.

Sharing a video of the incident on Facebook, Craig said he was “absolutely heartbroken” after not being allowed to give his mum a “cuddle”.

“I was angry, it was a really empty feeling. She needed us more than ever,” Craig told Good Morning Britain.

He added: “I did speak to everybody and say my mum is very vulnerable, and I will need to, at some point, if she does break, I will need to go and comfort my mum.

“I couldn’t sit there and watch my mum go through that.”

Craig said he heard the door open as soon as he started moving his chair towards his mother to comfort her.

“That’s when you see me slightly look back and the way he came, I’d say, flying out of the room towards us – I was slightly nervous of how much pace he was coming at me with,” he said.

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“When he said ‘stop’ and explained what he wanted us to do, I had to make a split-second decision – do I react? Do I try and talk to this guy, reason with this guy, and beg this guy that I need to be with my mum?

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“Or do I sit back down with my chair and give the service that my dad needed and we needed?”

Craig said his friend had recently died, and he knew the “conditions we were coming up against” after attending his funeral the week before.

But Craig and Paul had been in a “bubble” with their mother for weeks before the funeral and questioned why the council has different rules to what the Government has put in place.

Milton Keynes Council has apologised for the “upset” caused to the family.

A spokesman told the Standard: “We don’t usually step in if a guest needs to be comforted by another family member and in this instance should have taken a more considered approach.

“We ask funeral directors to let us know whether any chairs should be grouped in advance, and from now on this includes guests who are in the same household or bubbles, as well as people who need extra support.

“We hope this provides additional comfort at a difficult time.”



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