By Chris Wright
Staffordshire police have launched an investigation into an incident last Wednesday that saw several Port Vale players besmirch and defile the flora at Hanley Central Forest Park while out on a pre-season yomp.
A park warden happened upon a group of the players urinating in the bushes and contacted his superiors at the local council, who in turn contacted the police, who in turn contacted Port Vale to inform them that they intended to look into the incredibly grievous matter.
Friends of Central Forest Park chairman Paul Breeze said: “We are talking about professional footballers. I am sure some of them will be reprimanded for this. They should show more respect.”
Councillor Andy Platt, city council cabinet member for city services, said:
“We are aware of an incident involving Port Vale Football Club’s use of Central Forest Park last Wednesday. This matter is being looked into by Staffordshire Police, and we are helping the police with their inquiries.
“No-one has been prevented from using the park as a result of the incident.”
Inspector Shaun Kerrigan, from Stoke-on-Trent Central Local Policing Team, said:
“We received a complaint from Stoke-on-Trent City Council in relation to the use of Central Forest Park by playing staff from Port Vale Football Club. We have raised this complaint with the club’s management, which is addressing the matter.
“All such complaints about the use of open public spaces are taken seriously and dealt with accordingly.”
Good to know.
A couple of miscellaneous ‘park goers’ were also interviewed by the Stoke Sentinel to provide the ‘Helen Lovejoy’ perspective on this heinous crime against nature, with a ’31-year old mum-of-two’ whittling: “What sort of message does this send out to kids?” while presumably clasping her hands against her despairing face and fainting on the spot.
To which Port Vale supporters’ club chairman Pete Williams replied: “If the players have to go, then they have to go.”
Yep. That’s the message.
(Image: Stoke Sentinel)