A RADCLIFFE resident says his great-great-uncle killed in the First World War would be “turning in his grave” after the town’s war memorial flower beds were reduced in size.

Ernest Lee, 64, of Belgrave Drive, says that after complaining to Bury Council, he was told that funding and staff issues were to blame for reductions of the existing beds.

In a time where many relatives will be remembering loved ones killed in the Great War 100 years ago, Mr Lee said that it is disrespectful to people who have given their lives for their country.

“About three weeks ago I happened to notice that they made the flower beds smaller at the memorial,” said Mr Lee.

“There have always been beautiful flowers surrounding it but the beds have been reduced with little space to make it look good.

“They always seem to find the money for other pointless things we do not need, but when it comes to things that have historical importance they are not interested.”

With next month marking the 100-year anniversary since his great-great-uncle, Percy Lord was killed, Mr Lee says that the timing could not be worse.

His name, along with many others, is engraved on the town’s memorial which the flower beds surround.

“Percy died at just 22-years-old whilst fighting in Belgium in the First World War,” he said.

“June 6 will be the 100th anniversary of his death so it is not the best timing for them to be messing around with the memorial.

“Percy, along with everyone else whose name is on that memorial would be turning in their graves.”

A spokesperson for Bury Council said: “Our gardeners take great pride in being involved in the North West in Bloom initiative and are constantly looking to make improvements to Radcliffe.

“The flower beds at the cenotaph contained sustainable planting such as lavender and other herbaceous plants, which were starting to look


“We decided that the beds would look more colourful if they were planted with seasonal bedding plants, however this would have made this an expensive option with the size of the existing beds.

“Therefore, over the winter period, our team reduced the size of the beds ready for planting up in June this year.”