50 Backpacks in crisis as Fenland Council rips apart damaging allegations made against Wisbech councillor
- Credit: HARRY RUTTER
An organisation set up to help the homeless was in meltdown this week after its chairman Simon Crowson posted a series of malicious allegations.
Mr Crowson (Spike) used Facebook to fire off damaging accusations against a Wisbech councillor.
The claims were made on his 50 Backpacks Facebook page after he had questioned a ‘victim’ (a woman in her 30s) and who offered him screenshots of emails sent to Fenland Council intended to support her accusations.
Council leader Chris Boden and chief executive Paul Medd met on Tuesday and authorised an investigation.
The council later issued a statement saying they had “identified both the original email partially published last night and the full correspondence trail associated with that email.
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“We can categorically confirm that this email has been completely misrepresented”.
On Monday they had become aware “of serious allegations made on 50 Backpacks’ Facebook page about Cllr Steve Tierney and Fenland Council.
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“The allegations were that Cllr Tierney had been accused of serious sexual misconduct and that Fenland Council had ‘covered up’ a complaint made about Cllr Tierney’s alleged behaviour.
“50 Backpacks purportedly supported their allegation concerning Fenland Council’s alleged ‘cover up’ by publishing a partially redacted section of an email from FDC, sent in 2016.”
The council found the correspondence and “we can categorically confirm that this email has been completely misrepresented.
“The email did not in any way relate to a complaint of sexual misconduct against Cllr Tierney; there has never been any complaint received by FDC against Cllr Tierney regarding sexual misconduct.” 50 Backpacks had “fundamentally misrepresented” the emails. Fenland Council completely refutes 50 Backpacks’ blatantly false claim that the council ‘covered up’ any allegations of sexual misconduct, whether by Cllr Tierney or by anyone else”.
Mr Crowson has since removed the 50 Backpacks page from Facebook. In an oblique message to other Facebook pages today he says: “My job is done, so whatever happens to me or the future of 50 Backpacks is immaterial”. There was no apology to either the council or Cllr Tierney.