As first reported by TWM.news, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Wrestling launched a Parliamentary Inquiry into Professional Wrestling in Great Britain earlier today. The inquiry will be led by the co-chairs of the APPG on Wrestling, Alex Davies-Jones MP (Labour) and Mark Fletcher MP (Conservative). A report is expected to be published in early 2021.
In the official announcement, the APPG states the inquiry's purpose is:
• "To inquire into the current status of British wrestling, the contribution the industry makes to Britain and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on it's success."
• "To review whether the current law and regulations governing the industry are fit for purpose and to uncover models of good practice."
• "To make recommendations, rooted in best practice where possible, for frameworks to improve, or measures to support, the industry."
The inquiry is looking for written submissions of no more than 2,000 words from interested parties before November 27, 2020. Submissions can be submitted by email to [email protected].
Within the FAQ's of the announcement, the group stated why they are conducting the inquiry. They wrote: "British professional wrestling has, since inception, operated without any significant high-level support. Promotions have seemingly had to operate under dissatisfactory conditions, talent have faced uncertainty in securing pay or expenses there are few common standards in respect of safeguarding at wrestling training schools. An inquiry is long overdue."
The APPG on Wrestling issued the following press release:
"A group of cross-party MPs plans to wrestle with the question of how best to promote, support and improve the wrestling industry in Britain, it was announced today.
The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Wrestling, co-chaired by Labour MP Alex Davies-Jones and Conservative Mark Fletcher MP will start taking evidence, written and oral, to inform a report due to be released in early 2021.
The British Wrestling industry has come a long way since the days of Giant Haystacks and Big Daddy, two very familiar names to households across the country. In recent years, homegrown talent has graduated to premier league wrestling with Brits in prominent positions in the WWE, AEW, New Japan Pro Wrestling, Ring of Honor wrestling and elsewhere. In fact, Drew McIntyre became the first Brit to become WWE World Champion earlier this year. However, the MPs are keen to point out that the industry constitutes more than the top TV promotions.
"From Bingo Halls to backroom brawls, British wrestling before the pandemic hit, was thriving in venues across Britain" said APPG co-chair Mark Fletcher MP. "Professional wrestling is the hidden jewel in Britain’s entertainment industry”. “It needs and deserves our support". "We want to hear from fans, wrestling talent, promoters and others what their views are on how we can support the industry".
British wrestling has been rocked in recent months by allegations of sexual misconduct with far-reaching consequences. The MPs will seek to better understand how the industry can be better governed and are seeking out good practice examples to inform their work.
In addition, the MPs want to know what practical measures might be put in place to make wrestling an attractive feature of Britain’s offer to the world post-Brexit.
Alex Davies-Jones MP, APPG co-chair said: "Our wrestling scene is a focus of world attention, and rightly so. Not only should professional wrestling be more widely promoted and understood, it should be supported. From Government to organisations like the Arts Council, we will be leading the parliamentary charge for a public love of wrestling.""