FALMOUTH and Camborne MP Candy Atherton has asked for a meeting with Defence Ministers on behalf of Arctic Convoy veterans told they cannot receive a medal recognising their bravery during the Second World War.

Candy has written to the Ministry of Defence after receiving letters from several constituents angered by a decision to stop them receiving a prestigious medal offered by the Russian Government. The convoys braved icy seas and enemy U-boats taking supplies to Russia during wartime and included sailors from both the Merchant and Royal Navy.

Candy met members of the Falmouth Merchant Club in Falmouth on Monday to speak to them about the campaign.

"I believe this is a classic case of rules belying common sense," she said. "Sometimes this can be shrugged off but in this case it insults acts of bravery in the face of adversity few of us can imagine.

"There are two issues here. Firstly, the British Government's refusal to issue a medal of commendation themselves and now their refusal to allow the Russian Government a chance to express their gratitude to the veterans of the arctic convoys. We are told that the time elapsed and rules regarding awards by foreign governments make this impossible, but such rules have been waived in the past, as in the case of Suez, and I think it right for them to be waived again.

"I have asked Ministers to reconsider and have offered to lead a delegation of veterans and the Falmouth Merchants Club to a meeting at the Ministry of Defence to make their case.

"I am also hoping to meet some of those concerned and representatives of the Merchants Club next week in Falmouth. Coinciding with the Merchant Navy Day commemorative march on Sunday and the current display in Falmouth High Street it seems very fitting to be campaigning on behalf of the veterans."