MP brands cancellation of Barnsley Remembrance parade due to police budget cuts ‘outrageous’

Barnsley East MP MIchael Dugher.

Barnsley East MP MIchael Dugher.

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An annual remembrance parade held to honour fallen soldiers who have lost their lives fighting for their country has been cancelled this year - due to police budget cuts.

Michael Dugher, MP for Barnsley East and member of the Hoyland and District Royal British Legion, has criticised the Government after cuts to South Yorkshire Police’s budget mean the force will be unable to supply three officers for the branch’s remembrance service on November 8.

The event takes place every year and is attended by hundreds of residents.

Usually at least three police officers are assigned to monitor the parade, which was due to include a march through Hoyland, finishing at the Cenotaph.

But government budget cuts mean no officers have been assigned to the parade this year, and the march has been cancelled because of health and safety concerns.

Mr Dugher has written to David Crompton, chief constable of South Yorkshire Police, to call for officers to be supplied.

He said: “Any suggestion the usual Remembrance Parade in Hoyland is to be cancelled is outrageous.

“Remembrance is always a poignant time when the whole country comes together to reflect on the service and sacrifices of those who have given so much to make our country safe.
“I know from being a member of the RBL’s Hoyland and District branch the parade sees hundreds of people turning out to remember those sacrifices.”

“The blame for this lies firmly and squarely at the door of the Government. 
“South Yorkshire Police are facing considerable financial pressure due to Government cuts, but I hope the force will reconsider and provide officers to ensure the Hoyland Remembrance Parade takes place in full.”

Superintendent Shelley Hemsley, of Barnsley’s local policing unit, said: “We will be laying wreaths at 17 Remembrance Day services across Barnsley, as in past years, including the service in Hoyland. 
“Some officers are attending in their own time to pay their respects and others have altered their duties to because we understand how important Remembrance Day services are to our communities. The parade has been shortened at the organiser’s request.”

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