Bomber veterans 'could face £500k bill'
22 June 2012
Bomber Command veterans could face a bill of more than £500,000 to pay for security and seating at the unveiling ceremony for a new memorial next week, it has emerged.
A five-year campaign by the Bomber Command Memorial Appeal charity raised over £6.5m to fund the building of a memorial in London's Green Park dedicated to the 55,573 airmen of Bomber Command who were killed during World War II.
The charity's board of trustees, which includes four veterans of the World War II bombing campaign, must now find more money to fund security and seating for the unveiling on 28 June, which will be attended by 10 members of the royal family, including the Queen, as well as more than 6,500 veterans, widows and their families.
The costs of unveiling the memorial are said to be so high because all of the thousands of attendees must be security checked ahead of the event.
While the Department for Culture, Media and Sport has agreed to provide a contribution towards the cost, it has not been revealed how much, and trustees have reportedly been told the Ministry of Defence will not provide funding.
Jim Dooley, chairman of the memorial's fund-raising committee, said: "The MoD response to this has been disgusting. The unveiling has become a state occasion, yet we are getting no help from the state."
The MoD reportedly said it was not allowed to fund charities.
HAVE YOUR SAY
25 June 2012
If the Charity fails to fund the security, will HMG allow assassination of the Royal Family? Surely the cost is attributable to the policies of HMG and the appropriate desire to protect our Soverign - neither of which are event issues.
Do politicians pay personally for their protection during hustings? Do parties pay? It may cost more than they think if they degrade themselves by such stupidity. I though security of its citizens was one of the duties of the state which in turn provided the legitimacy of much of our law.... are we determined to become a pariah state AGAIN? (imprisonment of children, internment without trial, Geneva/Hague conventions, Iraq, Nuc Prol Treaty etc etc) I look forward to "elightened" regimes in China, Iran, Iraq, N Korea and others legitimately criticising us again! Anyway I thought we were now secure as a result of Iraq & Afghanistan, Tony said we would be!
Matt - Chatham
27 June 2012
Regretfully MoD have a long history of incompetence in their role of provision and support for the members of HM Forces, both past & present. Having served from '63 to '87 I have long been unsurprised by MoD's attitude to those it is meant to help.
John Sutherland - London