Vandals ‘trash’ South Norwood clubhouse for fifth time

Togetherness: the players and coaching staff at Croydon FC, denied the finish to their season, have now been rocked by a fifth break-in in less than 12 months. Photo: Paul Davis

ANDREW SINCLAIR on another bitter set-back for a local sports club

Croydon Football Club’s premises at Croydon Arena in Albert Road, South Norwood was broken into on Friday – the fifth break-in at the non-league team’s clubhouse in a year.

Croydon FC’s clubhouse last suffered vandalism damage and theft at the end of January.

This time around, a security alarm alerted the club’s management at around 6.10am.

While it appears that on this occasion nothing was taken, damage was caused to a couple of the doors of the clubhouse and a few of the offices.

In the words of Liam Blencowe, Croydon’s commercial director, “they were trashed”.

The club is already reeling from the decision taken by the FA to end the 2019-2020 season because of the coronavirus emergency, and to render all the campaign’s results null and void. It denies Croydon the (albeit remote) chance of winning promotion back to the Southern Counties East Football League’s Premier Division at the first opportunity.

“With the season being terminated, this had had a huge financial impact on the club due to loss of revenue from matchdays, and events in our clubhouse,” Blencowe said.

This week’s break-in appeared to be an act of vandalism

“This break-in now adds to the financial pressures that we are experiencing, as we now have to undertake repairs and install further security measures.”

Blencowe yesterday launched a Go Fund Me page on behalf of the club which had already exceeded the £500 in less than 24 hours, the money to be used for repairs and associated maintenance costs.

“We are blown away by the support that has been shown already by the local community,” Blencowe said.

“We are hoping to have bumper crowds at the start of the season and will be looking to arrange a summer fund-raising event for the club, too – all subject to the ongoing, awful situation surrounding covid-19, of course.”

If anyone has any information about the incident, they are encouraged to contact the local police.

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