Unusual shrine to Hackney cat Bertie, ‘the boss of the neighbourhood’
- Credit: photo: Arnaud Stephenson
A cat was such a well-known character in his neighbourhood that since his death a tree outside his owner’s Hackney home has become a shrine to his memory.
Bertie was knocked down by a car in Wilton Way on November 3, aged 16.
Within days a tree outside his owner Lynda Kyprianou’s home was adorned with messages, pictures and flowers to the white and tabby feline.
Mrs Kyprianou said: “You wouldn’t believe the floral tributes out there for a cat. It’s so unusual this tree, it’s like when a person is killed by a car.
“I just noticed another note out there, it was from a little boy saying: ‘I loved you and I will miss you’. It’s heartbreaking, he was so loved by everyone, he was the people’s cat.
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“I knew he was loved by the amount of people that stroked him and made a fuss of him but to have this out there is amazing.”
Mrs Kyprianou, who has been touched by the response to Bertie’s death, described him as “the boss of the neighbourhood”.
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She said: “He used to walk with my husband to the local Costcutters which is quite a walk, he would wait outside for my husband to come out like a little dog, people would say, ‘Oh my god, was he watiting for you?’
“When he was younger he would bring me in presents, he would bring me in odd socks and I don’t know where he got them from, whether he took them from washing lines I don’t know where he got them from.
“The whole neighbourhood knew him and loved him, it was like he loved people too, he would go in their houses,” she added.
“People are putting the odd rose out there, someone put some flowers and when they died, they replaced them with artificial ones. But it’s the notes and letters out there that are really moving.”
One tribute reads: “Wilton Way will never be the same again, saddened to hear about the loss of dear old Bertie.”