Council refuse scarecrow grant

BATTLE Town Council has given a £100 boost to the town’s Medieval Fayre - but turned down a request for financial help from the Battle Scarecrow Festival.

The Battle Chamber of Commerce, which organises the Medieval Fayre, wrote to the council asking them for an unspecified financial contribution towards the event.

At a council meeting on Tuesday, Cllr Ron Harris said: “I think it’s something we should support as it brings in a lot of visitors to the town.”

Cllr Jeremy Eldridge added: “Let’s hope they contact Rother (District Council) and ask them the same thing.

“The car parks will be full, it would not hurt Rother to give them £100.”

The town council voted to donate £100 to the cause.

But a request from the Battle Scarecrow Festival committee for £75 towards printing costs divided councillors.

Cllr Paula Fisher said: “People put a lot of time, energy and thought into the scarecrow competition, it does bring a lot of people into the town.

“If it just covers the printing, I am one hundred per cent in favour.”

Last year the event raised around £800 for charity through entry fees, selling scarecrow kits at the Battle Medieval Fayre and street collections. This year’s event is supporting Battle-based Autism Sussex.

Cllr Margaret Kiloh questioned if such a well-supported event really needed the money.

Seven councillors voted in favour of donating the money, seven voted against.

Council chairman Richard Bye cast the deciding vote not to donate the £75.