York & North Yorkshire

Worry over soldier fund shortfall for Catterick centre

Two North Yorkshire charities have said there is a "critical shortfall" in funding for a centre in Catterick to help wounded soldiers.

The Army Recovery Capability (ARC) centre will re-habilitate sick and injured soldiers.

ABF The Soldiers' Charity and Rotary International said £350,000 was needed to run Catterick's ARC at capacity.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said it had already contributed £35m to the scheme to "deliver a range of support".

Help for Heroes and the Royal British Legion have also contributed millions of pounds.

'Not infinite'

The charities said £350,000 was needed annually to provide 30 soldiers with an Individual Recovery Plan (IRP).

Janet Bishop, from Rotary ,said: "The big question is should we raise that money, should it not be paid for by the MOD?

"They are paying an awful lot for it but there's just not an infinite amount of [public] money."

The charities said funding had only been provided to build and run the ARC, and not for IRPs.

UK centres

Brigadier Jeremy Gaskell, from ABF, said: "The most important thing is that we have a facility that gives the best opportunities.

"It does make me angry, but the fact remains we want to get on and do something because if we don't they aren't going to be built."

In a statement the MoD said: "MoD, Help 4 Heroes and The Royal British Legion have already committed the funding to deliver a range of support to our soldiers including building, running and manning the Recovery Centres.

"The ABF contribution adds to that already available to the Individual Recovery Plans that provide activities and opportunities to help recovery."

ARC centres are also planned for Hampshire and Colchester. A centre in Edinburgh is already operating.

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