A Billington business has come to the aid of a village football club after vandals damaged the pitches – for the third time this year.
Whalley Juniors FC members labelled inconsiderate vandals “idiots” after they discovered their pitches had been damaged by drivers doing “donuts” on the grass.
Steve Kenny, chairman of Whalley Juniors Football Club, said he is getting tired of the disruptions and is worried that one more incident could seriously jeopardise the pitch at the QEII Playing Fields once the funds have dried up.
He said: “It’s so frustrating, I’m so angry. The damage could have cost a fortune. We’ve worked really hard over the years to get the pitches how they are today.
“We managed to secure a grant from Sport England for £50,000 and Ribble Valley Borough Council donated £8,000, but we, as a club, raised £22,000 by holding a series of fundraising events. A few weeks ago Langho Football Club was targeted.” Steve said he was left “annoyed” and “frustrated” earlier this year after twice suffering near identical incidents to the pitches. He added: “Why are these vandals ruining it for hundreds of children?”
After hearing about the damage caused, local firm Harrisons Engineering have pledged to donate two sets of security gates for each entrance to the pitches to try and finally put an end to the vandalism problems.
Joe Roberts, operations director for the Longworth Road-based firm, said: “We always try to do our bit to support community events and the football field is used for playing cricket, football, tennis and bowls.”
The goodwill is appreciated by Steve, who said: “We cannot thank them enough.”