Battle Royal British Legion folds

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THE BATTLE Royal British Legion Club has closed its doors for the last time.

The club blamed the decision to fold on a lack of finances amid reports of falling membership numbers.

A spokesman said the club, which was based in the Battle Memorial Hall, preferred to close whilst still solvent to avoid damaging the image of the RBL.

The RBL Branch, the charity side of the organisation, will continue looking out for the welfare of local ex-service personnel and its work with the Poppy Appeal.

Kevin Regan, acting honorary secretary of the Battle Royal British Legion Club, said: “The Club has to be run on commercial lines to provide a home free of charge to the Branch.

“Obviously it needs to have sufficient income to do so and recently it has hardly been worth opening the club due to poor attendance.

“This is because many of our members are shall we say less young than most, and it isn’t easy getting out in the evenings.

“We do have a strong core of younger members and we are doing our best to ensure that the balance between old and new is acceptable to all.

“After all, it is to the younger generation that we must pass the Torch of Remembrance.

“The Club committee is continuing to work on finding other premises, so if anyone has somewhere suitable, please contact me via The Observer.”

The Battle RBL Club officially closed on Saturday (March 31).

A farewell event took place the same night, which included an auction of items from the club.

But the event was marred when a Battle RBL Club member was arrested in the early hours of Sunday morning (April 1), following an alleged disagreement between a small group of people.

Police received a 999 call at 3am, following reports a man had punched the front door to the Battle Memorial Hall, cracking the glass.

A 44-year-old man from Battle was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage, questioned by police and released on bail until April 12.

Mr Regan told the Observer: “Unfortunately there was a bit of unpleasantness resulting in one of the hall doors being damaged.

“The member concerned was arrested and has already apologised to the hall manager and is paying for the repairs.”