Warwickshire Police refuse to insure town's Remembrance parade

First published in Alcester

ORGANISERS of Alcester Remembrance Day parade were hit with an added difficulty this year after they were informed that Warwickshire Police wouldn’t be insuring the event.

The news came only a month before the parade, and the British Legion has had to employ marshalls for the day.

Town clerk Chris Wright said: We were shocked. These things are organised months if not a year in advance. For them to come one month before the parade and say ‘you’ve got to do it a different way’ meant we had to do a heck of a lot more organising.

“When I inquired with the British Legion to ask if they supplied the insurance cover, they said they only supplied insurance cover for the British Legion, so in Alcester where we get a lot of other organisations join the parade, it would mean that they all have to be covered by their own insurance.”

Branch secretary David Malin, doesn't think he changes will have much effect on the day. He said: "We were made aware by Warwickshire Police that they would not be actively closing the roads for our parade as they have done in previous years, but would attend to offer public reassurance to those taking part.  As a result we organised our own private security personnel to man the road blocks.  The parade and church service would go ahead as planned."

“I’ve heard from other branches that it will cause them problems because they haven’t made other arrangements. I think the police assume that these things are organised by councils.”

A spokesman for Warwickshire Police added: “It is the responsibility of the organiser to apply for a road closure order from the local authority and to provide marshalls to ensure public safety. Guidance is available from the Home Office.

“Police officers will provide visible reassurance patrols at the events, and are happy to work with the event organisers to assist with the planning process.”

The announcement has implications on other parades due to be held in Alcester, the most imminent being St Nicholas Night in a few weeks time.

Mr Wright added: “We’ve got down and sorted it out now and we shall be organised, and if we carry on this way in the future we shouldn’t have any problems, but we’re going to have to really look seriously at this and get it clarified.”

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