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Town hall in bah humbug wrangle

PUBLISHED: 11:29 30 October 2008 | UPDATED: 13:23 24 August 2010

LONDON - NOVEMBER 13:  Professional Father Christmas performers gather for an annual Santa School on November 13, 2007 in London. The yearly school is run by 'The Ministry of Fun' a supplier of Santa for events and parties.  (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

LONDON - NOVEMBER 13: Professional Father Christmas performers gather for an annual Santa School on November 13, 2007 in London. The yearly school is run by 'The Ministry of Fun' a supplier of Santa for events and parties. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

2007 Getty Images

by Alex Wellman Council chiefs have been accused of snubbing Christmas and favouring other religious holidays in a misguided attempt at political correctness. Conservative councillors in Camden have called on the council to Give Us Back

by Alex Wellman

Council chiefs have been accused of snubbing Christmas and favouring other religious holidays in a misguided attempt at political correctness.

Conservative councillors in Camden have called on the council to 'Give Us Back Our Christmas' and stop speaking for other religions during the festive months.

The councillors are demanding that all Camden Council letters, greeting cards and website pages carry the message 'Merry Chirstmas' during December.

Cllr Keith Sedgwick, Gospel Oak ward where 51 per cent of the people are registered as Christian, said that he did not expect to gain enough support to get his motion across.

He said: "There is in this current Liberal Democrat group a very strident secularism that sits with the leadership of their national party and there is absolutely no way given the current make up that this motion would receive the support it deserves.

"I think other religions are given a weighting which Christian festivals are not. I infer from that, that there is an assumption among a section of the political classes that they need to correct an imbalance in this country and it's an agenda which is self prescribed.

"I have not in all my dealing with Muslim and Jew friends any complaints about Christmas.

"What is patently offensive is that they assume to speak for all these religious minorities and misrepresent their views."

The issue will be raised at the council meeting at Camden Town Hall in Judd Street, King's Cross, on Monday November 3.

Camden Council said no decision would be made on the motion until the meeting but Liberal Democrat councillors called the issue a waste of time.

Cllr James King, Kilburn ward, said: "As the economy moves into recession, I am surprised Conservative councillors consider the content of the Council's greetings cards to be a priority issue.

"This bizarre motion does not specify who it is accusing of renaming Christmas as a Winter Festival, which is even linked to soaring divorce rates.

"I certainly consider Christmas to be an important celebration and holiday for those of all faiths and none. But I would not want the Council to incur extra costs reprinting official letters as a result of the motion."

alex.wellman@archant.co.uk


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