September 18th 2020
Tamworth Borough Council: Daniel Cook And John Chesworth Stand Accused
Daniel Cook

Tamworth Borough Council Leader Daniel Cook and Culture head John Chesworth stand accused of a “dereliction of duty on Public Health in the town” as they continue to allow potentially unsafe football to take place this weekend.

Leisure Leagues – who operate 6 a side football leagues for millions of players worldwide – obtained footage a few days ago which clearly showed the leagues on the community pitches at Tamworth Enterprise College disregarding Covid regulations despite the rising cases and local lockdown’s in neighbouring Solihull, Sandwell and Birmingham. You can read the revelations here:

Now, six days after the shocking video was taken, no one from the council has asked to see it, a fact that Leisure Leagues’ Andy Thorley described as “disgraceful”.

“What was on that video wasn’t a joke. It was dangerous and it could have really harmful effects on the community. There were 20 new cases of Covid-19 in Tamworth in the week to 17th September, and we can only hope that those figures remain stable.”

If those cases rise, leading to eventual deaths then Andy said that Council Leader, Daniel Cook (pictured) and Environment and Culture chief, John Chesworth will have a lot to answer for.

The Tory councillors have refused to speak to Leisure Leagues since mid-August, and barred the firm – who were going to run Covid-safe leagues on the community site at Tamworth Enterprise College – from operating.

Mr Thorley however added: “ Messrs Cook and Chesworth have a responsibility to the people they represent, irrespective of anything else, to keep them safe, and for them not to even ask to see the footage – which we would happily show them – after a full five days of it being available, is nothing more than a dereliction of duty to the Public Health of the town. For them not to even acknowledge the contents is disgraceful.”

Ironically, Leisure Leagues offered their guidelines – which are far more stringent than is required by law – to the council when sport began to resume, a gesture they refused. “We are disappointed but not surprised,” said Andy. “This is typical of the arrogance that Mr Cook and Mr Chesworth have shown throughout this process. We believe that football should be accessible to everyone.  Our ethos is that 6 a side is for the many, not the few that those in power decide.”

Leisure Leagues have been able to re-start their Covid- safe league on a Monday at Landau Forte. The competition – thanks to the generosity of a local benefactor – is free meaning that over 200 people will be taking part in the safest league in the town.

Andy reiterated the Leisure Leagues offer that the footage was available for anyone at Tamworth Council to view, adding: “Mr Cook might not realise the seriousness of the situation, he would if he saw the video. He and Mr. Chesworth might think they are untouchable. The wider community, however are not.”

Back to Blog