A GRIEVING family claim they were denied the chance to pay their respects to loved ones after the gates of a crematorium were closed on Christmas Day.

Mary Millson and her sister-in-law Ann McFadyen went to the Garden of Remembrance at Glasgow Crematorium at Lambhill with a wreath to lay under Ann's family plaque.

Ann, 45, and her brother Billy (Mary's partner) were visiting to remember their parents, Willy and Winnie.

It is understood the Garden of Remembrance will also be closed tomorrow.

Ann, from Lambhill, said: "Like previous years, my family and I visited the Garden of Remembrance to place a wreath under the family plaque.

"I was upset to see the gardens closed to the public, and I was not alone.

"Many families had to turn away with the flowers they planned to lay.

"One lady was close to tears, Christmas day was the day that a member of her family had passed away."

Mary, 52, was visiting the site with her mother Nan, 80, to pay respects to her late father Peter and brother Brian.

Both Mary's father and brother passed away within three weeks of each other two years ago.

Mary said they always go as a family to the garden to pay their respects.

She said: "It's a tradition, we've been going there for around eight years now.

"We go up there before our Christmas dinner, then we come back and think about everyone.

"We were and are a very close-knit family and you don't forget about your loved ones, especially at Christmas."

The Glasgow Crematorium & Chapel, run by the Scottish Cremation Society is situated in the grounds of Glasgow's Western Necropolis.

There is no notification of opening times on their website, apart from on the order form for a plaque or an entry in the Book of Remembrance.

Mary said that she has since learned there was a notice of the change of opening times in the Book of Remembrance.

She added: "It must have been well hidden as no one from my family saw it, and obviously many others did not see it too.

"We don't expect the gardens to be open all day on Bank Holidays, but the usual few hours on previous years gave families time to remember loved ones."

The Evening Times contacted the Scottish Cremation Society, but no one was available.

fiona.mckay@ eveningtimes.co.uk