Police refuse Poppy Day march support

Poppy Appeal.
Poppy Appeal.
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A charity saved a Remembrance Day parade after it agreed to pay £804 for road closures after the police refused to provide it.

There were doubts that veterans and members of the public would be able to parade through Bourne on Sunday.

Normally Lincolnshire Police provides officers to stop traffic for marchers.

This year though the force refused to provide staff leaving Bourne and District Royal British Legion (RBL) facing a problem.

The police want organisers to arrange and pay for traffic management solutions for their events.

The force also feels that officers manning the parades could be better deployed.

The added cost meant organisers feared that the parade would not be able to go ahead.

Luckily the Len Pick Trust stepped in to help with an offer to pay the traffic management bill.

Peter Garratt, the RBL Poppy Appeal organiser for Bourne and District, said: “It caused us an awful lot of problems.

“We were only offered one or two officers to close the roads.

“We worked with Bourne Town Council and the Len Pick Trust to resolve this.

“The Len Pick Trust has agreed to pay for the traffic management.

“It’s ironic that we are having to call on another charity to run this event.

“Considering what the parade is about the police’s decision is disgusting.

“I bet there is no problem in shutting the roads in London for the Cenotaph parade.”

Adrian Smith, Len Pick Trust manager, said the charity was happy to support the parade calling it “integral”.

To take part in the Bourne parade report to the bus station by 10am for a 10.20am start. Anyone wishing to lay a private wreath should speak to the stewards at the Memorial Garden by 10.35am.

There will be a service at 10.45am and then a two minute silence followed by a service in the Abbey Church.

The police force’s Chief Constable, Bill Skelly, said: “In the last 18 months, we have been working closely with parade organisations and their members to develop their understanding of their roles and responsibilities in delivering Remembrance events that are both safe and lawful.

“I am delighted that so many have engaged with us and that many parades are now able to proceed with little or no impact on the other commitments that Lincolnshire Police have to provide daily.

“Remembrance Day will remain an important event in our policing calendar and I will continue to work with organisers to make these events as safe as possible.”