Home of Royal British Legion branch faces permanent closure
- Credit: Alan Saxby
A Royal British Legion (RBL) base and treasured community hub faces closure if it does not find volunteers to fill its committee.
Brandon RBL club has suffered an exodus in recent months, with several committee members stepping down due to ill health and work commitments.
Legion clubs are technically not part of the famous armed forces charity and differ from branches, which are responsible for charitable activities.
But they must abide by strict rules to stay open, including by having a minimum of seven on its committee.
"The past year or so has been quite difficult and devastating for the club," said Neil Tattersall, chairman since 2019.
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"As we started to come out of the latest lockdown, it became apparent that a lot of the committee members wanted to step away.
"At the moment the club can still trade, but we are not permitted to do anything as a committee. We can't even vote anybody in because we need a full committee to support each decision.
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"Really, this is call to arms for the Brandon community to come forward and volunteer their services."
To remedy the situation, Brandon's RBL club needs people who have been ordinary members for more than six months to step up and become committee members.
An annual general meeting (AGM) has been called by Mr Tattersall for July 5, at which at least four vacant positions must be filled.
Closure of the club, located off the A1065 London Road, would see the RBL charity take ownership and the building would likely be sold.
Alan Saxby, chairman of Brandon's RBL branch, said such a scenario would be a huge blow to the community.
"The club is used by a lot of other groups and, without it, they would have nowhere to meet," said Mr Saxby.
"A lot of people think it is just for ex-military, but everybody is welcome.
"After all the hard work Nigel and his committee have done to improve the club, it would be such a shame to see it close.
"What they need now is some bodies to make the decisions. The rewards for the community could be massive."