Printer Friendly

Stadium reward for good deeds.

Byline: By Wales on Sunday

Good Samaritans will see Six Nations games for free after a Welsh Assembly Government U-turn over an embarrassing hospitality scandal. Officials scored a humiliating own goal when they were exposed for entertaining VIPs at two Millennium Stadium boxes, which have cost the taxpayer pounds 500,000.

They were leased by the Welsh Development Agency and Wales Tourist Board - quangos which no longer exist as they are now part of the Assembly Government.

Economic Minister Andrew Davies last week claimed cancelling the lease would cost as much in penalty clauses as keeping the boxes.

But following a review, First Minister Rhodri Morgan last night announced the boxes - located in prime position on the half-way line - will instead be used to reward charitable groups once the Six Nations 2007 tournament kicks off in February.

'When required, the boxes will continue to be used to attract key business investors into Wales, but our intention from February 2007 forward is also to use these excellent hospitality facilities at the stadium as a way of recognising and rewarding those citizens who have made a contribution to the community going beyond the call of duty,' Mr Morgan said.

The public will be asked to nominate deserving groups or individuals.

News of the turnaround will be welcomed by Welsh rugby fans who criticised the huge bill, which paid for slap-up meals, drinks and waiter service. Plaid Cymru last night also welcomed the move. A spokesman said: 'The use of public money for such boxes must be used responsibly, where hospitality is provided in a way which is beneficial to Wales and the Welsh public.'
COPYRIGHT 2006 MGN Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Nov 12, 2006
Words:272
Previous Article:SEX ATTACK ARRESTS.
Next Article:New Plaid Iraq push.
Topics:

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters