Somerset

MP calls for Wellington Monument restoration funds

Wellington monument, Blackdown Hills, Somerset Image copyright National Trust/Fran Stothard
Image caption The monument was built in 1817 but has been closed to the public since 2005

Taunton Deane's MP has asked for government funding to help restore the Wellington Monument, ahead of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

Conservative MP Rebecca Pow asked Commons Leader Chris Grayling for a "little pot of money", during business questions.

The tower was built to mark the battle, but since 2005 it has been fenced off because of falling stone debris.

Mr Grayling said there would be a chance to lobby colleagues for cash.

The 175ft (53m) high tower was built in 1817 to mark the Battle of Waterloo which took place on 18 June 1815.

Celebrations to mark the 200th anniversary of the battle are due to take place in Wellington.

Ms Pow called for a debate to be held to "celebrate and discuss this wonderful anniversary".

"Perhaps he [Chris Grayling] might find a little pot of money to restore the wonderful Wellington Monument which is in so need of an upgrade," she said.

In response Mr Grayling said he did not have the budget to pay for the work but "there will be many opportunities to lobby those of my colleagues who do have such a budget".

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