BRADFORD Council has apologised after being accused of turning Addingham War Memorial into a "building site" with work around it on Remembrance Day.

The area's MP Robbie Moore said he was "shocked and horrified" by the timing of the work, which began shortly before November 11.

Mr Moore wrote to the Chief Executive of Bradford Council, Kersten England, after a resident contacted him to complain.

The resident, who has not been named, said: "I cannot believe (except I have seen it with my own eyes) that the council would be so insensitive as to lift up all the flagstones in front of the Memorial, put sandbags alongside the wreaths, rope off the area, and all just before Remembrance Day itself.

The resident said the war memorial "looked so desolate, not a fitting place to remember today of all days. Because it is roped off, residents would have been unable to stand and read the names inscribed on the Memorial."

In his email to Ms England, Mr Moore said: "It appears that Bradford Council decided that it would be appropriate to turn the Addingham War Memorial into a building site the day before Remembrance Day. I am sure you can appreciate how outright disrespectful and upsetting this is.

"I am shocked and horrified that this decision was even taken. Subsequently residents of Addingham were unable to pay their respect in the usual manner yesterday because the site has been cordoned off.

"Can I have your assurance that this matter will be investigated immediately and the situation rectified as soon as possible so people can continue to pay their respects to our fallen heroes at what has been a very difficult year for many in our community."

A spokesperson for Bradford Council said: “We sincerely apologise that work to improve the paths around Addingham War Memorial was being carried out during Armistice Day on Wednesday 11 November.

“This was a genuine mistake and the Council deeply regrets this error and the upset and offence that it caused to the people of Addingham.

“The Council takes good care of all our Memorial sites and works hard to ensure that they are kept safe and well looked after for all residents wishing to pay their respects.

“We understand that Armistice Day is a particular day when people wish to visit the Memorial sites and we again apologise that the people of Addingham were not able to do so this year.”

But the workmen have been praised by Addingham Parish Council who have stressed how helpful they were.

Vice chairman Simon Tennant said that when they were filming an additional session at the memorial the workmen helped by clearing the site to allow filming to go ahead.

A spokeswoman said: "The council was pleased that the repairs were carried out near the War Memorial in time for the important day."

The work on the War Memorial site was being carried out by contractors for Bradford council. The parish council had been requesting repairs to the broken flagstones for some time and had been assured that the work would be done in time for Remembrance 2020. The parish council was not informed in advance of work beginning.