A HAMPSHIRE man has been left 'surprised and angry' after being told he could only put one name on his mother's gravestone – despite his father's featuring 11.

Stan Poore's mother, Violet, died in November last year aged 90, and has since been buried next to his dad, Desmond, at Holy Trinity church in Colden Common.

But when Stan visited Blackwell and Moody to get a headstone engraved, he was told it could only include the name of his mother due to regulations set by the Chancellor of the Diocese of Winchester.

Stan, 61, a gardener who lives in Warnford, said: "When our dad passed away in 2008 we had no trouble with what went on his gravestone and our mum wanted the same as him. All members of the close family right down to the grand children, had their names on dad's gravestone, which is quite a common tradition.

"So imagine my surprise on turning up at the stonemasons to order mum's and handing over what we wanted, only to be told that we couldn't have it.

He added: "What's the harm in including other names? They won't even allow us to put my dad's name on it, to say they're 'reunited', or something along those lines.

"I don't understand what could have changed for them to make the decision to change the rules."

Stan returned to the stonemasons with a revised design including just the initials of the family names, but was again told this was against the rules, which are implemented across all churchyards within the Diocese of Winchester.

The rules, which can be found on the diocese's website, do not directly address the inclusion of more than one name.

Stan said: "The rules and regulations don't say anything about not having other names. The closest thing it does say is the stones must not detract from the church.

"I understand why, if people want different shapes and colours, but it's just a couple of names. I don't see how that can spoil the view, even if it is a grade two listed building!"

He also reported a gnome that was 'baring his bottom' had been left next to a cremation pot at the church, and jokingly asked "why that is allowed"?

The vicar of the church, Reverend Damon Draisey, has since been in contact with the family, and Stan hopes to meet with him to discuss the regulations.

Stan commented: "Fingers crossed, when we do meet, it'll be agreed that an exception can be made at very least. It's what my mum wanted, and she should be allowed to have it."

A spokesperson for the Diocese of Winchester said: "We understand how important memorials are to families and want to make sure that a new inscription can be agreed which both meets the Chancellor’s Regulations and reflects the family’s wishes, so the local vicar has been in touch with the deceased’s family to discuss some new wording options."

The Echo has attempted to contact Rvd. Draisey but await a reply.