British Legion to boycott MK Rose

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Some members of the Royal British Legion are boycotting next month’s Armistice Day gathering at the MK Rose –because parts of the memorial are ‘disrespectful’.

They refuse to line up for Remembrance Day alongside pillars representing Skipping Day, Teabag Day, International Joke Day and Knit in Public Day.

“It’s disrespectful to the dead,” said Jubilee branch chairman Ken Whiskard. “The best it could ever be is a garden of remembrance but it’s not somewhere where you’d dip your Standards.”

He said his members would be attending a “proper” memorial service instead.

The MK Rose is designed as a place for quiet reflection and has taken four years to build at Campbell Park.

It will eventually consist of 140 pillars arranged in the shape of a flower. Each one will commemorate something important to the people of Milton Keynes.

Chairman for the South East Midlands region, Mike Barry, said the boycott by the city’s Jubilee branch did not reflect the opinion of the British Legion as a whole.

He will be discussing the matter with the branch.

Meanwhile Mayor of Milton Keynes, Councillor Brian White, is leading the official Act of Remembrance and wreath laying at the MK Rose Armistice Day Pillar on November 11. Two days before that he will officially open the MK Rose at 11am.

He said: “This is a public commemoration and all are welcome”.

> For full story see www.miltonkeynes.co.uk