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Wednesday, 17 September 2014

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Calls to reimburse veterans for cost of Barrow First World War centenary service

COUNCIL cash should be used to reimburse veterans who paid for an event in Barrow to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, it has been claimed.

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ANGER Chairman of The Duke of Lancaster Branch of the British Legion Tom Berry, former member of the Army Medical Corp Ray Powell, and Geoff Grierson of the British Legion, who said a flag should have been flown above Barrow Town Hall on Monday. Inset, Councillor Jack Richardson HARRY ATKINSON REF: 50066447B002

Angry residents hit out at Barrow Borough Council after it was revealed the town hall had failed to fly a flag to mark Monday’s anniversary.

A memorial service held in Barrow on Sunday was organised by veterans from armed forces associations after the council decided against holding an event.

Those who voiced their disgust at the council’s lack of action have now called on the town hall to reimburse the £800 spent on the event.

Ray Powell, a 75-year-old veteran, said: “The council should have done something more and I agree; they should reimburse the veterans who paid for the event.”

Councillor Jack Richardson, leader of the oppostion and Conservatives on Barrow Borough Council, said: “Over 12 months ago I asked (council leader) Dave Pidduck what the council was proposing to do for the event.

“He said the council would work closely with all the relevant service organisations to ensure it was properly marked. But it clearly wasn’t. The people of Barrow have been let down.”

Cllr Pidduck said he would look into the possibility of reimbursing the £800 but Dave Barlow, chairman of Barrow Submariners’ Association, which jointly organised Sunday’s event, said he would prefer any money to be donated to charity.

Mr Barlow said: “Personally, I wouldn’t want the money back as it was our event and we organised it. The council could perhaps make a donation to a military charity.”

Cllr Pidduck said: “I will look at it but there are rules about councils paying out money.

“I think any council leader, including Jack Richardson, would always be wary about setting precedents about paying out money and I would have to take advice on that.”

Have your say

Not a chance.

Posted by Tommy Atkins on 9 August 2014 at 08:29

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