┆The purpose of The Football League Committee of Inquiry was “\[t\]o review the structure of the League's championships and cup competitions and to make recommendations as to future viability" (The Football League Committee of Inquiry Terms of Reference).
A Note by the Chairman (Chester) elaborated: "\[o\]ur enquiry has two objectives (1) To consider the various proposals that have been made for changing the structure of the League and the English competitions in which League clubs participate (2) To appraise the present financial condition of the 92 Clubs with a view (a) to suggesting measures which would restore them to a reasonably healthy state financially and (b) having got them there, suggesting measures which would prevent them slipping back. I take it that the general aim is a League composed of financially viable clubs." (Note by Chairman in S/005/02/02/002)
Norman Chester was appointed Chairman of the Committee in 1982 by The Management Committee of The Football League. The other members of the Committee were: A.J. Boyce; J.J. Dunnett; C. Lloyd; J.W. Smith; and C. Townsend.
The Football League Committee of Inquiry was the second football inquiry Chester had led (see series S/005/01 for records of the first inquiry). As with the first inquiry, this inquiry was known by variations on the name including 'The Chester Committee', 'the Committee of Enquiry into Structure and Finance' and 'the second Chester Report'. In this catalogue, the series is named in accordance with the name used most often by The Football League. The spelling of inquiry is inconsistent in the records and 'inquiry' has been chosen for this series in order to differentiate this inquiry from the first Chester inquiry, which was more consistently spelled 'enquiry'.