A RESIDENT has called for the removal of a memorial to soldiers who fell in World War One to be removed from a Tyne Valley village as it "exhibits nationalism."

A Wylam resident wrote to the parish council, asking for the village's silent soldier to be removed.

The metal soldier, located beside the village's war memorial, was put in place in 2018 to mark the centenary of the end of World War One.

However, the resident was concerned that the memorial was now off-putting, exhibited nationalism, and is anti-inclusivity.

The issue was discussed at the latest meeting of Wylam Parish Councillors.

Several councillors felt that it was time for the memorial to be removed.

Coun. Jim Martin said the Royal British Legion had only asked for the memorial to stand until the end of 2018.

He said: "I spoke to the Royal British Legion and they said the silent soldiers had to be in place until the end of 2018.

"My own view is that it's not a permanent structure and I don't see why it couldn't go after Remembrance Sunday."

Coun. Jos Joures added that the parish council owned neither the sign nor the land.

He said: "This is an issue between the owner of the sign and the owner of the land - but we did start this whole thing because we wanted it there.

"My own personal view is I probably wouldn't put it up in the first place, and I'm not fond of it - but I'm not sure I want to speak on behalf of the village. You will get some of the people in the village upset."

In response, the council's chairman, Stephen Duckworth, said: "I would be one of those people.

"I'm conscious that there's been wear and tear and it's not a fitting memorial if it looks scruffy.

"Personally, I don't agree with the premise of the letter. I don't think it exhibits nationalism, or that it's off putting, or it's anti-inclusivity."

The council agreed to write back that although they disagreed with the reasons described in the letter, they understood it not to be a permanent structure and the possibility of it being removed could be explored.