A top Kirklees councillor has defended his right not to sing the national anthem following criticism by an Examiner reader.
Kirklees cabinet member Clr Graham Turner was silent during a recital of God Save The Queen at the Kirkburton War Memorial, on Armistice Day.
Mrs Sykes said: “I was disgusted but not surprised to note that Kirklees Labour Councillor Graham Turner was a non-participant when the national anthem was being sung at the Kirkburton War Memorial on Armistice Day.
“One must assume that Clr Turner was following the example of Jeremy Corbyn. Why do socialists think it is appropriate to disrespect our war dead and the nation they died to defend?”
Clr Turner, a republican, said his refusal to sing the national anthem was not a slight on the war dead.
He said: “I never sing the national anthem. Was that disrespect to the people that died? No.
“I believe it is my right as a citizen of this country to express my belief in a republic and I believe that a number of people who fought in the wars were republicans.
“I recognise their ultimate sacrifice – that’s why I attended.”