THE man behind the trip which led to grants being scrapped has labelled the move a ‘disgrace’.
Ken Mitchell, chairman of the Harton Moor Residents’ Association believes last year’s outing to Leeds has been blown out of proportion.
The taxi driver was approached by elderly members on the estate, and he helped apply for funding and organise their day out.
However, he has been left stunned by the backlash the outing received.
He said: “We are talking about pensioners spending a few pounds on a day out. We didn’t take away thousands of pounds from the borough.
“In reality it should have just been called a ‘day out’, not a shopping trip, and if it had been, nobody would have said a word, just like nobody has ever said anything in the past.
“We never did anything sneaky or dishonest. We said all along what we wanted to do, and councillors agreed for the funding to go through.”
Mr Mitchell highlighted that a number of local businesses, including a coach company and catering firm, also benefited from the grant.
He said: “We kept money in the area by using local services. We weren’t taking it away. I think it’s a disgrace this has happened, and I know a lot of groups, not just ours, are now going to suffer.”