Riddle over closure of Legion club

January 30 2017

MYSTERY surrounds the sudden closure of Staple Hill's Royal British Legion Club in Kendall Road.


MYSTERY surrounds the sudden closure of Staple Hill's Royal British Legion Club in Kendall Road.

The club has been described as a "hub of our community" by Staple Hill councillor Ian Boulton and its loss will be felt by many people across the area, particularly the elderly.

It has played an important role in bringing people together by hosting events and enabling clubs to use the premises. Its members also raise thousands of pounds for the Legion's annual Poppy Appeal.

It is believed the club had its public liability licence removed which led to the club closing its doors before Christmas, although the British Legion's head office would not confirm this.

The branch's website has been removed and events planned cancelled.

Royal British Legion spokeswoman Gina Edwards said: "The building at Staple Hill is a club building that was being used by the Legion’s branch to host meetings and community functions. Although the building is currently not in use the Staple Hill branch is still operational within the local community.

"Unfortunately I cannot offer any further information."

Cllr Boulton said: “The Staple Hill Royal British Legion building was funded and built by local members with the support of their families and friends. It has been a hub of our community ever since and many of us are regular visitors because of the facilities they offer.

"The local Poppy Appeal raises many thousands of pounds to support the valuable pastoral work that the Royal British Legion does and this building has been at the heart of those efforts.

"Until recently the headquarters of the Legion has had very little stake in this valuable local resource. It is a shame that the headquarters has now, in all intents and purposes, appeared to be hell bent on evicting their local members from the building. I hope the British Legion recognises who the real stakeholders of this asset are when they announce what their plans for this site will be.”