Amidst painful austerity measures, a national debt rising into the trillions of pounds and various job losses in both the private and public sectors, civil servants have been criticised for enjoying a taxpayer funded jolly in Loughborough.
Hours after their Unions had pledged a national day of strike action which promises to bring the country to a standstill, many Government officials from dozens of departments were granted ‘special paid leave’ on top of their usual holiday entitlement to attend the Civil Service Sports Council (CSSC) Games, which were subsidised by public funds.
The two-day excursion also followed an outcry by the Public and Commercial Services Union at cuts to the Civil Service, which have involved 24,000 staff losing their jobs.
In excess of 1300 public sector staff travelled up to the University campus to enjoy not only the CSSC games, but also a fancy dress party at the Student Union.
One public servant told The Mail on Sunday:
"I've been given two days paid special leave for this and I know most others have as well… That's obviously not good for our argument that we should keep our jobs."
Another employee, Simon Browne of the Department for Work and Pensions tweeted on Wednesday:
"Meeting done, off to Loughboro uni now for CSSC games. 2 days special leave, all paid for +beers to play over 35's 6-a-side football #happydays."
CSSC is a means for 130,000 public-sector workers to engage in a variety of sporting activities and was in receipt of £1.06 million from the Government this year.
It told The Mail on Sunday that it provided £100 000 for the event, paying for entry and accommodation for the 1300 participants. Each member pays CSSC £3.50 per month in subscription fees.
What is your view? Do you think this a waste of taxpayers' money or do you think the Government subsidy is warranted by the good work the Civil Service do? Let us know by commenting at the bottom of the page, emailing email@example.com or tweeting @labelonline.