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Press Release: Community group launches Crowdfunder after Town Council opts not to authorise grant for NHS celebration

Tuesday, 29 May 2018 11:04
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Press Release: Community group launches Crowdfunder after Town Council opts not to authorise grant for NHS celebration – 29/05/2018

Contact: James Beecher 07734 058789

Stroud Against the Cuts will hold their Annual General Meeting (AGM) at the Lansdown Hall from 6.30pm this Sunday 3rd June. The AGM will be accompanied by a film about the housing crisis, Dispossession, and act as a fundraiser for the Keep Gloucestershire’s NHS Public NHS70Stroud celebrations. Ahead of the AGM, the group has launched a Crowdfunder at www.gofundme.com/nhs70stroud in an attempt to raise the £1,000 they say is needed for “venue hire, public liability insurance, publicity and display materials, and to cover the expenses of our special guests”, as well as to make a film of the event.

The launch of the Crowdfunder follows news the Clerk of Stroud Town Council has decided that “it would not be appropriate, or lawful, for the Council to issue a grant” for Keep Gloucestershire’s NHS Public “NHS70Stroud” celebrations. Stroud Against the Cuts had applied for £1,000 from the Community Support Fund Grants scheme, and Councillors had agreed in principle to approve the grant - but had delegated the final decision to the Town Clerk. Though the group say they repeated their desire to work with the Council to ensure no funds were spent inappropriately, and committed to modifying or removing any elements that might be regarded as in contravention of Local Government legislation at a “positive” meeting with the Clerk on Thursday 24th May, the grant will not now be made.

Chair of Stroud Against the Cuts James Beecher said: “We're obviously very disappointed that our funding application has not been authorised. Who can access health care, and how that care is managed and paid for, are clearly issues that are "political" in the sense of who has power in society, but nonetheless as we keep saying, the purpose of our event on the 7th July is to celebrate the founding principles of the NHS. In defending these principles, we believe that it is ordinary people standing up for NHS services and the people who work in them that is most important – not party politics.”

He added, “While not being granted funding by the Town Council makes organising our NHS70Stroud events more difficult, we are determined to ensure to the celebrations go ahead – and as closely as possible to our plans. We really want it to be a great day for the town – worthy of the occasion. We are obviously even keener than previously to collect donations, as without them we will have to curtail the activities – people can contribute online via gofundme.com/nhs70Stroud, or at our AGM this Sunday 3rd June.”

Stroud Against the Cuts' 2018 AGM will be held on Sunday 3rd June from 6.30pm at the Lansdown Hall (GL5 1BB). It will include election of officers, a review of the previous year and overview of the group’s plans for next year. There will also be a screening of the film “Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle” (from 7.30pm). The 80 minute documentary explores the agenda behind the neglect, demolition and regeneration of council estates in the U.K. over the past thirty years. The film-makers say: “Dispossession is the story of people who know that housing is not an expensive luxury, but a fundamental human right… The film reveals how individuals and communities are fighting against the state and private developers, as they try to save their homes from demolition, while investigating the decisions that turned a crisis into a tragedy.”

At the NHS70Stroud celebration in Lansdown Hall and Bank Gardens on Saturday 7th July there will be stalls from health organisations, music from the Songs of Change choir, Stroud Red Band bringing their boisterous brass, and a selection of hits from 1948. Keep Gloucestershire’s NHS Public are hoping to have talented jive dancers, as well as top speakers on the NHS and its history, and will even be joined by 'Aneurin Bevan' (an actor reading some excerpts from his speeches). There's the promise of cake too, of course. More information is available at: nhs70stroud.wordpress.com.

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 29 May 2018 11:10