More than half the free tickets for West Ham United home matches distributed by Newham Council have been used by their own employees, it has been claimed.From a total of 5,970 tickets handed out thus far by the Council as part of their arrangement with West Ham, just 2,728 reached members of the local community - with the remaining 3,242 being allocated to employees of Newham Council, according to a KUMB source.
The 3,242 tickets snapped up by Newham employees were used for the Europa League qualifiers against Domzale (1,433 tickets) and Astra Giurgiu (1,010) plus the recent EFL Cup tie with Accrington Stanley (799) - resulting in 55 per cent of the available tickets intended for local residents going to unnamed Council workers.
"Newham previously stated that 'the tickets are used to reward residents for being active and resilient members of the community'," said the source.
"Lead councillors for each of our community neighbourhoods will have a role in managing these rewards, and settling the criteria for distributing tickets to their residents who are making a contribution to their community.
"Why is it, that in each of the three games referred to, there were more tickets given to Newham Council staff than went to those 'active and resilient members of the community'?"
According to our source, tickets for the first of the three games above were distributed on "a first come, first served" basis - whilst tickets for the Astra and Accrington matches were allocated to Newham Council employees via "a ballot process".
"In terms of those tickets being offered to community groups, relatively few have not been taken - and certainly nowhere near the number that are then taken by Newham council staff," continued our source.
"For example, a total of 760 tickets were offered but only 60 not taken by community groups for the Accrington game - whilst Newham council staff used a further 799 tickets for that game."
Meanwhile a KUMB member has claimed that he is regularly offered free tickets for West Ham's home matches by a Newham Council employee.
"I know someone who works for Newham and she has text me to ask if I want tickets when she is offered," said James P. "She gets offered them a day or two before the game, although It seems to only be the low-interest, non sell-out games."
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