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Former Falkirk councillor Dennis Goldie blasts treatment of Camelon Road Cenotaph

WAR dead and veterans are being dishonoured by local and national government, claims a former councillor.

In a hard-hitting attack, Dennis Goldie, who has twice been Provost of Falkirk, has accused the council of "shaming" those who laid down their lives for their country.

He also strongly criticised the move by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to cut the compensation awarded to injured soldiers.

Now he plans to call a meeting to allow other locals to make their feelings known.

Mr Goldie (60) is unhappy at the state of the Cenotaph on Camelon Road and said weeds growing between the paving stones surrounding the memorial showed a lack of respect and civic pride.

This week he took matters into his own hands and weeded the area – a job he said he is prepared to do regularly if the council allows him.

He said: "I think it is shocking that it has been allowed to get in this state.

''It shows a lack of civic pride and is disrespectful to all those men from this area who died for their country.

"I've watched it get worse and worse – and I'm not prepared to sit back any longer."

Falkirk Council's estates manager Colin Cunningham said all the district's war memorials were inspected annually and maintained.

He said: ''These are generally scheduled to take place in September each year prior to the Remembrance Sunday services.

"In addition, this location is included within the grounds maintenance schedule and weed control of the associated hard surface is carried out on a 'three times per season basis'.

''This activity is being carried out as per the schedule but it has been necessary to supplement this by hand weeding the location and this has been undertaken within the last two weeks."

Mr Goldie was a councillor for 28 years before standing down in 2007 to unsuccessfully fight the Falkirk West seat in Holyrood. This week national government was also in his firing line over a court appeal to cut compensation.

Two soldiers had their original payouts increased due to complications, but the MoD argue they should only be compensated for their "original injuries".

Its attempt to have the payment over-ruled in the Court of Appeal has attracted criticism.

Mr Goldie said: "I am appalled at the move and think most folk will be. I am going to call a meeting and ask the constituency Labour Party to write to Gordon Brown and the Armed Forces Minister to make these feelings heard.

"Considering that the bodies of young soldiers are regularly been brought back from Afghanistan, I think this is awful.''

 
 
 

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