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Quad bike vandals doing doughnuts damage football pitches

Vandals caused damage to two pitches at Stowupland Falcons FC Picture: STUART HOWEL/STOWUPLAND FALCONS FC

Vandals caused damage to two pitches at Stowupland Falcons FC Picture: STUART HOWEL/STOWUPLAND FALCONS FC

Stuart Howel

Vandals damaged two pitches at a thriving Suffolk football club, forcing weekend youth games to be postponed.

Peter Mayhew, chairman of Stowupland Falcons FC, said he believes a quad bike caused a number of tyre marks across two pitches at the club's Church Road base overnight on Saturday.

Damage was caused to a junior pitch, used by under-nine and under-10 boys and under-11 girls, and a full-sized pitch which the club's under-14, under-16 and under-18 boys play on.

Mr Mayhew said vandals doing "doughnuts" on the pitches has happened at the club before.

"It's just such a pain," he said. "It's quite dark up there and I think they've used a quad bike to ride across the two pitches.

"It looks like they've done some doughnuts and then rode off through the school exit.

"We had to call games off on Sunday, obviously the weather wasn't great but with the damage as well, we had to cancel them.

"It isn't the first time it has happened, we had one last year when a car drove on the field.

"It was during the winter and the tyre marks froze and it then made it dangerous for the players. We couldn't play on them for months."

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The club currently operates men's SIL football along with boys and girls teams from under-eight upwards, and is entirely run by volunteers.

Mr Mayhew added that the club does not have the money to fund repairs to the surface.

"We can't afford to fix it," he said.

"We need a roller but we haven't got one.

"We'll have to see how the pitches recover but potentially we might have to cancel more.

"It just causes so much work for our volunteers.

"We have a group of volunteers here who give up their own time and work very hard so that boys and girls of all ages can play football.

"I suppose they [vandals] just think it's a bit of fun but it's not fair."

Mr Mayhew added that he has not reported either incident to the police.

On Saturday, Essex club Billericay Town saw its National League South match against Weymouth postponed after an overnight break-in.

Vandals left tyre tracks across the pitch after two vehicles drove across the surface.

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