Dec 20 2012 by Jamie Bowman, Crosby Herald
SEFTON Council has denied claims that it is planning to cut back support for Remembrance Day services.
A report which went before senior councillors last week described how cutting the Mayoral Office, which is responsible for the service to the statutory minimum, would leave “a reliance on partners such as the Royal British Legion... to deliver residual events”.
In a joint report, Sefton’s head of transformation services, Jan McMahon, and head of finance and ICT, Margaret Rawding, admitted: “The main risk is around sensitive events such as Holocaust Memorial Day and Remembrance services and the ability of partner organisations to continue the facilitation of these events.”
Members of Crosby’s British Legion expressed shock at the proposals, with a group staging a protest outside Bootle Town Hall.
Dave Quinn, the branch chairman, said: “To leave public events of this magnitude to retired, ageing, members of the Royal British Legion without any consultation could mean that these events do not happen.
“I understand and appreciate the cuts that this council has to undertake but there are other events that they should look at first.”
But a spokesman for Sefton Council said: “In no way are we scrapping Remembrance Day services across the borough.
“The services are an important way to enable us to remember those who died in conflict and will continue to be held.
“Changes to our current mayoral services are just one of a number of proposals being discussed as the authority looks to make savings over the next two years.
“If approved, the role of the Mayor of Sefton will change, however we will continue to support events like Remembrance Sunday and Holocaust Memorial Day and work closely with our partner agencies.”
He added: “This was first discussed last year and consultation with the regional Royal British Legion and organisers of the Holocaust Memorial Day was held informing them of the proposals.
“We also reassured them that while we were looking at a partnership approach, we would always fulfil our commitment to both services.”