Arsonist causes £10k of damage to football club unit

An arson attack at a children’s football club storage unit in the Birchwood area has left the club with thousands of pounds’ worth of damages.

A car tyre was found on fire outside the steel shipping container at Birchwood Colts children’s football club. It had club equipment, kit, kitchen units and other items inside that are all now smoke damaged.

We need justice

Club secretary Cliff Penning hopes whoever caused the fire is brought to justice after a situation he says could’ve been a lot worse.

He told The Linconlite: “By the time I got there Fire & Rescue were already there, they were brilliant.

“There was £10,000 of damage to equipment, kitchen units and other club staff, all smoke damaged. We will see what we can salvage.

The fire caused thousands of pounds worth of damage. Photo: Mark Meekings

 

“It could’ve been worse. We were lucky the fire brigade got there as quick as they did as there were two BBQ gas canisters in the container.

“Nobody was injured, but it was very serious. We need to find out who it was and bring them to justice before they target anywhere else. It has come at a bad time with a lot of Mid Lincs tournaments coming up.”

The cause of the fire has been recorded as ‘deliberate’. Photo: Mark Meekings

Fire crews from Lincoln South and North attended the fire at the football club during the evening of Wednesday, January 23.

A spokesperson for Lincolnshire Fire & Rescue told reporters that the call came in at 5.50pm, with the crews returning back to base at 7.20pm.

They said: “There was fire damage to 50% of a shipping container used as a sports pavilion. The fire was extinguished using one hose reel jet and two breathing apparatus. There were no injuries. The cause has been recorded as deliberate.”

Lincolnshire Police is investigating and anyone with information should call 101 quoting incident number 300 of January 23.

Community pulling together

Coach Ian Holdich set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for the club following the fire.

He said: “The football club runs a facility for young children to enjoy football, a real grass roots football club.

“A lot of equipment was destroyed in the fire including a kitchen facility that provides essential fund raising for the club. Kits, balls and other training equipment was also destroyed. If you can afford it please give as little or as much as you can.”

Cliff added: “I feel on a bit of a downer, five years getting planning permission getting the container here and sorting the club, in half an hour it was destroyed. The response from the public and club members has been tremendous.”

At the time of writing it has already raised over £1,100.