Stoke on Trent City Council have had more than their fair share of problems over recent years.

In February 2007 Stoke-on-Trent City Council was given one star and rated as the worst council in England by the Audit Commission under its Comprehensive Performance Assessment

From this unenviable position the only way to go is upwards, and so Stoke Council did by "improving strongly" to achieve an "adequate" two star rating in the 2008 report.

In addition to the relatively poor performance of the Council overall, in March 2009 the Mayor and another Councillor were arrested on suspicion of corruption in a public office.

Following these arrests the Council created an internal fraud investigation unit to protect those outside the authority from fraudulent actions of its employees.

By May 2009 the Minister for Local Government decided to intervene, issuing a statement that leadership of the Council was "damaged" and that control of the Council would be taken over by central government following the Governance Commission Report of May 2008 branding the Council leadership "fragmented"

Further arrests were made in 2010 relating to procurement and tendering fraud, and sickness fraud appears to be a continuing problem at the authority. In fact, almost twice as many Council employees were dismissed for sickness fraud as for other reasons.