Tamworth Council have been criticised for playing ‘fast and loose’ with public safety by allowing small sided leagues without to take place on their pitches this weekend without checking whether they are Covid secure.
On the afternoon that nearby West Midlands was placed into strict lockdown measures. Leisure Leagues – who have the most robust set of checks in the 6 a side football sector – have discovered that two other league operators who are operating on Tamworth pitches this weekend had copy and pasted Leisure Leagues own Covid 19 guidelines, and had not provided, or completed, any risk assessment procedure’s.
Head of Media Andy Thorley said: “The Government is quite clear that organised team sports can only take place if the facility and the organiser are both “Covid secure”, under the Government’s guidelines, and that there are no more than six people in each group. From what we understand, there will only be minimal staffing at Tamworth Enterprise College on Sunday to check that these rules are being followed, and the Council has made no checks whatsoever on whether or not other leagues are actually going to be Covid secure”.
“It appears that the Council takes a view that public health and safety, and Government guidelines, are secondary when it comes to these two league organisers and people are rightly asking why the Council are allowing them to play their leagues at all”.
Mr Thorley continued: “For instance, there should be no cash handling at the league, and all staff should be wearing face masks, and there should be relevant track and trace system in place, with all participants being monitored for temperature upon entering the pitch. There should also be hand washing facilities at the facility, and a minimum number of staff, ideally three people, so that social distancing and the guidelines are properly enforced by the facility. Tamworth Borough Council haven’t bothered with any of this, and they have made no checks whatsoever”.
The Council have been offered Leisure Leagues new Covid 19 guidelines for small sided leagues as a benchmark. Leisure Leagues have drawn up new Covid 19 secure guidelines since the new measures ‘rule of six’ was announced and offered them to the Council, but the Council has simply ignored the offer and said the other league providers will play on regardless.
Mr Thorley said: “This is an unbelievably reckless approach the Council are taking. It is one thing to ignore Government guidelines and not follow them rigorously. It is quite another to regard public health and safety in such a casual and throwaway fashion”.
The Council have been urged to stop all small sided leagues in the Borough whilst the new guidelines are in force and certainly until the Council has had a proper evaluation of the measures taken by every small sided leagues provider in respect of being Covid secure.
Tamworth Borough Council refused to comment.Back to Blog