Mindless arson attack threatens club’s future

Askern Villa FC sectretary Dave Hall pictured with the club's cafeteria and hospitality cabin, which suffered an arson attack and vandalism.  Picture: Liz Mockler D1673LM

Askern Villa FC sectretary Dave Hall pictured with the club's cafeteria and hospitality cabin, which suffered an arson attack and vandalism. Picture: Liz Mockler D1673LM

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A FOOTBALL club’s future is in jeopardy after arsonists destroyed cabins used by its teams.

Vandals set Askern Villa FC’s on-site refreshments cabin alight and smashed every window in the hospitality suite leaving the club looking at having to shell out up to £20,000 to repair the damage.

The intruders also wrecked brickwork in the main stand at the club’s Manor Way ground and spare kits that were used for charity matches were destroyed.

It is just under a year ago that the football club’s facilities were attacked after thieves broke in stealing various items including squad kits and copper piping.

Club secretary Dave Hall said the extent of the blaze meant the team had to cancel its midweek fixture against Louth Town and also puts its future league status in doubt.

He said: “I’m gutted. It’s happened to us again and the damage is just unrepairable.

“For us to be in the league you have to meet certain criteria with facilities and now this has happened, it puts our club’s future in jeopardy.

“There was no way we could play our game on Tuesday night because of health and safety concerns.

“We have done all this work to improve the facilities, it’s one of the best non-league grounds in the area and volunteers have even dipped into their own pockets to fund the refurbishment.

“The refreshments area is completely gutted, the spare kits have been destroyed as well. It will cost tens of thousands of pounds to repair.

“The people that have done this obviously have no respect for anyone, they never think of the consequences.”

Detectives have launched an investigation into Sunday night’s blaze.

Firefighters from Askern and Adwick were called out to the site just before 8pm and left at around 9.30pm after tackling the flames.

A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police confirmed that the portable cabins were broken into and inquiries were continuing.