‘All my staff are good people’: MD at Urmston play centre defends Food Standards Agency record-keeping fail

The Managing Director of an Urmston play centre that was awarded a one star hygiene rating by the Food Standards Agency for falsifying documents has defended her company.

Cheeky Cherubs Soft Play and Learning Centre failed its assessment when a Trafford Council inspector witnessed an employee editing records showing the temperature food was stored at.

But Sue Wilkinson, who takes no wage for her role, said that one mistake should not dictate people’s opinions of the non-profit centre.

“People can come in and ask me our score and I will tell them, we have got nothing to hide here at all,” she told MM

“I am a good person, I know I am a good person, all my staff are good people.

“We do a lot of community, we have given so many people chances, doing work experience, I have people with learning difficulties on the payroll.

“It was just a matter of a mistake on the day, are we not allowed to make mistakes, does that not happen?”

The FSE stated in their report that a one star rating had to be awarded as it was impossible to certify the authenticity of any records Cheeky Cherubs provided.

But Ms Wilkinson explained that the person concerned was an inexperienced member of staff, and that measures had been put in place to prevent such a situation from happening again.

“The member of staff was a new starter, they panicked when the officer came in and filled in the temperatures for the fridges,” she said.

“We were fine on everything else but we were just scored on a one because we falsified the previous day’s temperatures, that’s all it was.

“They are very good our reports and everything we do, it just fell behind on this one occasion.

“The person has been reprimanded and is on a written warning, obviously they did all the training when they first started but had only been with the company for four weeks.”

Ms Wilkinson is convinced that a follow-up inspection – which won’t take place until September – will award the play centre a five star rating.

But more than that, she believes that the good work that the centre does outweighs the negatives caused by the hygiene mishap.

“You would imagine people would be more interested in what we have achieved than what we haven’t,” she said.

“We are a not for profit social enterprise, we are doing good for the community, but we are struggling.

“It’s running based on apprentices and lots of volunteers.

“I have been a child minder for eight years, I have got three children, we got together with six people in the community and built this marvellous play area for the children.

“We have got a youth club, we have 50 children coming in on Monday and Wednesday night rather than being on the streets, in parks, causing chaos in the local area.”

Image courtesy of Google Maps, with thanks

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