Hucknall Remembrance Day parade from town centre axed over insurance woes

A shock announcement has been made that Hucknall’s traditional town-centre Remembrance parade – an event with almost 100 years of history – has been axed.
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This is a key event in the town as residents pay tribute to armed forces personnel who have given their lives in conflicts around the globe.

Hundreds usually join the parade from Hucknall town centre to the cenotaph in Titchfield Park. Last year’s event couldn’t go ahead because of Covid-19 restrictions.

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But now it has been hit by a row over public liability insurance around road closures and Remembrance Sunday events must now be overhauled.

A previous Remembrance Day parade set to leave Market Place in HucknallA previous Remembrance Day parade set to leave Market Place in Hucknall
A previous Remembrance Day parade set to leave Market Place in Hucknall

Major Michael Howard, secretary of Hucknall Royal British Legion (RBL), which organises the tribute, says the council has withdrawn its direct involvement and will not provide insurance cover, therefore there can be no parade that requires road closures.

Major Howard said: “It is sad to reflect that this year, there will be no parade through the town in respect of the 556 from Hucknall who gave their lives in the service of their country.”

It is claimed that, since 2006, after changes to how the police could get involved, the legion has employed a traffic management company to manage road closures on behalf of the council which retained responsibility with the parade covered by the council insurance.

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However, this can no longer be the case and the legion says it is not allowed to be responsible for road closures or insure a parade requiring them.

Thankfully a full Remembrance service will still be held at Titchfield Park on November 14 at 10.50am with a short parade within the park, including a band, from the top car park near the cafe to the cenotaph.

Responding, Ashfield District Council said its insurance cannot be used for the event and that responsibility lies with the organisers.

It will provide a grant of £750 to cover costs such as insurance and traffic management.

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David Lawrence, interim director of place and communities, said: "We recognise how important Remembrance events are to our communities and as we have in previous years the council is supporting the three town-centre Remembrance events, including Hucknall, with a grant of £750 each, to cover costs such as insurance and traffic management.

"Remembrance events are organised and planned by the local Royal British Legion or community organisations who need to have their own public liability insurance as liability lies with the organiser of the event.

"The council’s own liability insurance could not be used for the events.

"The council is committed to providing quality events for the community and supporting organisations, such as the Royal British Legion, with theirs.

"We have supported Remembrance events in previous years and will continue to do so in the future."