Key documents  in Neath Port Talbot are riddled with poor grammar, the chairman of the local authority’s social care committee has said.

Councillor Linet Purcell complained of long sentences without commas, full stops and capital letters.

She was told officers at a recent social care, health and wellbeing scrutiny committee it gave her “mental indigestion”.

She said: “On the one hand it looks like we are being picky when we mention grammar mistakes but, as lay people, we are trying to scrutinise very technical documents using language we are not familiar with, and we do our best.

“If we have very long, complex sentences with full stops and capital letters missing, it literally gives us mental indigestion.

“We have to read sentences, stop and start again.

“We feel bad grammar is militating against the scrutiny process.”

Councillors were scrutinising the Western Bay safeguarding board’s annual report.

Neath Port Talbot Council is the lead partner responsible for establishing effective regional safeguarding boards for the Western Bay area.

Responding to the criticism, Neath Port Talbot Council’s head of children’s services Keri Warren said: “The director [of social services, health and housing Andrew Jarrett] has been on the phone.

“I can only apologise.

“We have officers going through these reports. Our brief is to keep things simple and straightforward and to look at spelling and grammar.

“This is a Western Bay document, it’s been under some scrutiny but obviously not enough.

“One spelling mistake is particularly embarrassing for the director.

“My apologies.”

A spelling mistake appears in the introduction to the report with references to the “accountability of the pubic”.

One of the longer sentences in the report: “The National Probation Services and Community Rehabilitation Company are both active contributors to the Safeguarding Boards and whereas there is no requirement for us to invite prison governors safeguarding guidance highlights that it is likely to be helpful to both members and governors to ensure people in the secure estate are safeguarded effectively.”

The issue was raised during a committee meeting on Thursday October 11.