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Parents of boy killed in hit and run plea to Church of England to let him be buried in graveyard he played in

William Brown’s parents wish for him to be buried in an ancient Church of England graveyard   (Will Brown Snr / SWNS)
William Brown’s parents wish for him to be buried in an ancient Church of England graveyard (Will Brown Snr / SWNS)

The parents of a boy killed in a hit-and-run in Kent have pleaded for the Church of England to allow him to buried in the historic graveyard where he played every day after school.

Seven-year-old William Brown had been wearing his Cristiano Ronaldo football kit when he was hit by a car outside his home in Folkestone on Wednesday evening. He had jumped over the wall to retrieve his ball when tragedy struck. Kent Police arrested a 49-year-old man on Thursday.

His parents Laura and William Brown have now appealed for their son to be buried in the ancient graveyard of St Eanswythe’s Church of England school, where he had been a pupil.

William Brown’s parents Laura and Will (ITV News)
William Brown’s parents Laura and Will (ITV News)

His mother told the MailOnline that he would always visit and would be seen collecting conkers, picking wild garlic and playing with a stick.

“If he were laid to rest there, he will be amongst the heart of the community that he loved,” she said. “He would be among his school friends and we his parents could visit him every day and so could his little sister Pearl who still goes to the school.”

William was killed while playing outside his home (PA)
William was killed while playing outside his home (PA)

The local council has said it will look into the request. Parts of the church date back to the 13th century and the last recorded burial took place during the Victorian era at around 1860.

Paying tribute to her son, Ms Brown said: “William was the sweetest, kindest and funniest boy. He was an amazing friend to his friends. He loved animals, history facts, nature and digging. He loved fossils and dinosaurs. Anything weird and wonderful.”

For Christmas, he had requested an octopus, with his parents hoping to place a taxidermy one into his coffin.

Flowers and messages left at the scene in Sandgate, near Folkestone, after seven-year-old William Brown was killed (Gareth Fuller/PA Wire)
Flowers and messages left at the scene in Sandgate, near Folkestone, after seven-year-old William Brown was killed (Gareth Fuller/PA Wire)

“He loved football,” his mother added. “He supported Manchester United like his dad. But his favourite player of all time was Ronaldo. He died in his Ronaldo kit.”

A Folkestone & Hythe District Council spokesperson said: “We extend our deepest condolences to William’s family and our thoughts are with them at this very sad time.

“St Eanswythe’s is a closed churchyard and no burials have taken place there for many years. We are not aware that there is any space available. We will, however, look into this for William’s parents and see if their wish could be met.”