“In October 1957, the Central Council of Physical Recreation decided to appoint a small independent Committee to examine the general position of sport in this country and to recommend what action should be taken by statutory and voluntary bodies if games, sports and outdoor activities were to play their full part in promoting the general welfare of the community. The C.C.P.R. itself works only in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but the readiness of the Scottish Council of Physical Recreation to co-operate made it possible for the inquiry to cover the whole of the United Kingdom.
The decision to set up this Committee was made because of a general and growing feeling that some new initiative was required if sport - using that term in its broadest sense - was to be enabled to expand and develop in the light of present-day needs and standards. It was believed that this was most likely to be secured if an impartial Committee were asked to investigate and make recommendations about the many current problems affecting sport, some of them highly controversial.
The C.C.P.R. was extremely fortunate in securing the agreement of Sir John Wolfenden to serve as Chairman of the Committee. His colleagues on the Committee were invited to serve on the basis of their ability to examine and assess evidence, as well as their general interest in the subject. It was decided not to appoint anyone who was exclusively identified with any particular sport or organisation.
Though the C.C.P.R. has borne the expenses of the inquiry out of its voluntary resources, the Committee have worked quite in-dependently and, apart from giving evidence to the Committee in common with very many other organisations, the C.C.P.R. has taken no steps to influence their proceedings or recommendations.
Although, officially, the Committee's Report is presented to the C.C.P.R., the Executive Committee have decided to publish it immediately so that its recommendations will be available to all interested organisations at the same time. As its contents are not yet known to the Executive, the C.C.P.R. is not in a position to express any views about it, nor can it consider itself committed by the Report. It is hoped that the Report will be given urgent and careful consideration by all statutory and voluntary bodies con-cerned with the development of sport - Government Departments, local authorities and local education authorities, sports, outdoor activity and physical education associations, voluntary youth organisations and, of course, composite and representative bodies such as the British Olympic Association, the National Playing Fields Association, the Scottish Council of Physical Recreation and the C.C.P.R. itself.
On behalf of the Executive Committee of the C.C.P.R., I express deep gratitude to Sir John Wolfenden and his colleagues for the thorough and painstaking way in which they have discharged their responsibilities. Everyone concerned with sport must feel an immense sense of appreciation that such eminent men and women, already fully occupied, should have been willing to devote so much of their time to the inquiry. I hope that, as a result of their labours and recommendations, some decisive and far-reaching steps will be taken to enable sport to play an even fuller part 'in promoting the general welfare of the community'.”
(Signed) STANLEY F. ROUS,
Chairman, Executive Committee, C.C.P.R. (1960)
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Reference : CCPR. (1960). Sport & the community: The report of the Wolfenden committee on Sport 1960 (2009 web edition). London: CCPR
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