Saturday, 23 September 2017

Towers: Group faces legal action from Lib-Dems

IT started as a way of giving Darreners some memorabilia to stick on their window bottom or mantelpiece and has ended up with a heated row.

Darwen town mayor Roy Davies has been on his high horse threatening legal action against the friends of Darwen Tower who have sold over 40 elegant, cast aluminium models of the Tower, some of which had been abandoned by DTC five years ago and left to gather dust in a former councillor's garage.

It must be just about the biggest political clanger by the Lib-Dems in years, apart from the disgraceful sacking of the previous mayor, Councillor Brian Taylor (Labour), in a lightning coup back in May..Neither the Labour group nor the Tories have rallied behind Davies as townsfolk have been in uproar at the threat of legal action which could be costly.

Harold Heys, chairman of the FoDT, says: "Roy knew we were selling about 40 Towers. He was at our recent meeting when it was discussed. He says he told us not to sell the Council's original batch as they didn't belong to us. No one else at the meeting can recall this. I certainly can't. If he had I would have immediately challenged him. DTC had virtually abandoned the castings about five years ago.

"I had thought of either getting another 18 or so Tower made to replace the ones they had had made years ago or giving them around £700 from sales of Towers. But in view of the threat of legal action we will keep our powder dry. No one realises how much work went into this project. We haven't made much. We sold them very cheaply."

As news of the threat went around town folk were incensed that the Lib-Dems were threatening a hard-working voluntary group who had taken over what they had apparently abandoned and made a real success of it, forking out close on £1,200 to buy another 25 to sell.

The general theme: As if they didn't have enough to worry about with the state of the town and especially the market.

Mr Heys had planned to show one of the models at a local quiz he is running at Darwen Heritage Centre on Tuesday (Sep 26), but all 40 went inside three hours on Wednesday evening. "It was chaos," he said. "But everyone who got a Tower was thrilled to bits." None are left.

Everyone is asking: "Will there be any more?" Says Mr Heys: "The tremendous response had left us to seriously consider making another 50 in time for Christmas. But not now. We have lost interest. Perhaps the Council will get some made but they have had five years to do summat and done nowt, so I doubt it. Members of the parish council are too busy scoring points and playing party politics."