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"Petty" officials block Ealing Town Hall's jubilee paving stone
PLANS to lay a paving stone commemorating Queen Elizabeth II's diamond jubilee at the entrance to Ealing Town Hall have been dashed by 'petty' government officials
The Victorian building already has a plaque inside and a carving on one of its exterior walls marking Queen Victoria's golden jubilee in 1887.
But unlike 125 years ago the paving stone will not be able to mention the queen's name because government officials have banned it.
Council officers had to write to the cabinet office to ask for permission but it refused because the town hall is neither of 'outstanding national importance' nor connected to the royal family.
They suggested the stone could say "The Queen" instead of mentioning Queen Elizabeth II by name.
Ealing Central and Acton MP Angie Bray was outraged by the response and wrote a letter to the Cabinet Office asking them to change their mind.
She said: "It's a classic example of overzealous bureaucracy. In an age of renewed enthusiasm for the monarchy and the royal family, what's wrong with laying a paving stone commemorating the jubilee?
"Ealing Town Hall isn't any old average building, it's the focal point of Ealing town centre. And Queen Victoria had no problem with her name being used. It's petty and unnecessarily ungenerous."
Despite Ms Bray's letter, the Cabinet Office is standing by its decision.
A spokesman said: "Permission to use the name of Queen Elizabeth II is only granted to places or events of outstanding national importance or with a strong Royal connection.
We're pleased Ealing Council would like to join the rest of the country in celebrating the diamond jubilee, but we must ensure the same rules are applied fairly to everyone. We are certain that the council can use one of the alternatives we have suggested."
The council has also written to the Cabinet Office asking them to reconsider.
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