A mourner has voiced his disgust at having access to the grave of his parents restricted at the church where Kate Middleton was christened.

John Vincent, 80 from Earley, claims access to the grave of his mother and father at St Andrew’s Church in Bradfield has been restricted for years.

That’s because the church, which is where Kate Middleton was christened, was put up for sale in 2017, before being bought by Bradfield College.

During the sale period, the section of the graveyard where his father and mother are buried has been fenced off.

READ MORE: Prince William and Kate Middleton ‘set for move to Windsor’

And access remains restricted while Bradfield College conduct work on the building.

Mr Vincent said: “The grave has been fenced off, which means you’ve got to make an appointment with the College to see it, which I think is wrong.

“There have been times when we haven’t been given a time to visit.

“That’s not acceptable.

“This has been going on for five years, it’s beyond a joke now.

“One of my sisters comes from across the country in Hartney Witney with her children to see Mum and Dad’s grave but you just don’t know whether they’ll let you see it or not.”

Worship at the Grade II listed church ended in 2014.

It is believed Bradfield Parochial Church Council and Oxford Diocese put up fencing around the church out of health and safety concerns, which restricted access to some graves.

Bradfield College bought the church in August 2021 and work is taking place to convert it into a study centre.

READ MORE: Rare decision taken to move the remains of a baby boy from Tilehurst churchyard

A spokesperson for Bradfield College said: “As St Andrew’s Church has been empty for some considerable time, the building is in need of extensive

repairs, including a new roof, to make it safe and usable.

“Scaffolding and a temporary roof are currently being erected in preparation for this and for safety reasons we have had to continue to temporarily restrict

access to areas close to the building.

“However, we have worked with our contractor to provide safe access to some memorials that we’re aware are frequently visited, including the memorial in question.

“We have asked affected relatives who have contacted us to let us know when they are visiting so that we can make sure the area is safe for them.

“They don’t need permission or clearance to visit but will be able to get

closer to the memorial if we are aware of when they are coming.

“It’s not in the College’s interests to prolong works any longer than necessary, but restoring and converting this building is complex and involves extensive discussions and approvals from the Oxford Diocese, the Local Authority, Historic England and the Ministry of Justice.”

The spokesperson said they began the planning and building phase as soon as possible, and hope the work is finished by the end of 2023.

They continued: “The health and safety of both the public and workforce is our utmost priority and we do of course apologise for the inconvenience caused whilst we undertake renovations.

“We are committed to engaging with relatives and friends who wish to visit memorials in the churchyard so that we can provide safe access whilst repairs are underway.

“We held a public consultation event prior to submitting the planning application, but of course it is difficult to reach out to relatives who may not live in the local area as we do not have any contact details for them.

“I have spoken to Mr Vincent’s sister and she has subsequently visited.”

The spokesperson added they they are happy to speak with Mr Vincent to discuss his concerns.