Cup cancellation causes anger

The Tameside Stadium in Ashton.

Families voiced their frustration this weekend after Curzon Ashton Football Club were told they’d be unable to host the EMJFL finals.

Following a breach of COVID restrictions at the club’s charity match on Wednesday (19 May) evening, Curzon Ashton were informed that the Tameside Stadium could no longer host the East Manchester Junior Football League’s finals, causing an uproar amongst parents and families.

Raising funds for the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, the game accumulated a total of £2,211.79, however celebrations were soon halted after the club was faced with some upsetting news.

In a statement released by Tameside Council, it was announced that the club had been issued a fixed penalty notice of £1000.

“In agreement with Greater Manchester Police and the director of public health, Tameside Council has been left with no option other than to recommend the club voluntary postpone the weekend matches and issue an Improvement Notice to be compiled with.

“Otherwise notice would be served to close the Tameside Stadium for two weeks.”

This sudden cancellation of these games was both shocking and saddening to many local families, especially since their children had missed out on so many chances to play over the last year.

Chairman of the club, Wayne Salkeld, has spoken of how ‘bitterly disappointed’ he is at this decision.

“We are bitterly disappointed that so many young footballers will miss out on a fantastic experience.

“Moreover, we are upset that our attempts at bringing the community back together after such testing times has resulted in this.

“At the same time, we have to re-iterate our thanks to everyone who came out to support the two wonderful charities on Wednesday evening,” he says.

The club have confirmed that they will resume discussions with Tameside Council officials this week to understand any specific changes that need to be implemented at the club as soon as possible.

John Clayton, CEO of EMJFL has also shared his disappointment towards the closure of the stadium, speaking of how they will also be engaging in extensive conversation with the club and the council.

“We will be having conversations to see if further postponements will be enforced upon us and whether these games can be rescheduled,” he says.

Further talks are set to go ahead today, hopefully providing children and their families with some hopeful news regarding their much-loved sport.

More to follow.

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