Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Members fight for capital's British Legion club

Royal British Legion Scotland
Image caption The Royal British Legion Scotland has lost 10,000 members in the past five years

British Legion members have started a campaign to prevent their club in Edinburgh from closing.

The club, on Rodney Street, was ordered to close by the Royal British Legion Scotland (RBLS) on 24 July.

However, the club's president Ronald Dickson refused to hand over the keys to the Edinburgh and Lothian branch committee.

Mr Dickson said he had the backing of the members of the club.

He said: "It's very sad, we lose our older members as they die and young veterans don't want to be in beside old fogies.

"This is the last British Legion club in Edinburgh."

Mr Dickson, 74, said he and his supporters had been called "squatters" but insisted the club was solvent regardless of what the Legion alleged.

"We have paid our bills and owe nobody any money.

"I'd like to have a three way meeting between Haig House, club and branch."

He added that club members had passed a vote of no confidence in the branch committee over the issue earlier in the year.

RBLS has its headquarters at New Haig House in Edinburgh and has seen its membership fall by 10,000 in the last five years.

A spokesman for the RBLS Neil Griffiths said: "The club on Rodney Street has to close as the membership is not big enough to support its outgoings.

"The RBLS has a legal obligation as a charity to close the club."

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