BARNSLEY Council has defended the decision to hold its Freedom of the Borough event which cost more than £10,000.

It is the highest honour a council can bestow and the tradition is maintained as a means whereby public recognition may be given as an expression of the highest esteem in which they are held by the people of the borough.

Katherine Kelly attended the ceremony with fellow nominees Katherine Brunt, Graham Ibbeson, Mat Wright and the ICU team at Barnsley Hospital.

The costs for the event totalled more than £13,000 - with the six scrolls and caskets costing £9,000 and the reception costing £4,500.

Coun Alan Gardiner, cabinet spokesperson for core services, said: “Freedom of the Borough is an important event in our calendar.

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“It’s one that only takes place every four or five years, and so is budgeted as a significant event in the year.”