Pontypool RFC ‘at risk’ after blaze
6:53am Thursday 16th January 2014 in News
FEARS have been raised for the future of Pontypool RFC at Pontypool Park following another arson attack.
The historic club was targeted by vandals again on Friday night, with a bin fire set near the stands which caused “significant damage”.
It came just days after a Pooler club boss called for more help dealing with yobs at the site, which has suffered a number of vandalism attacks and anti-social behaviour incidents.
Now Ben Jeffreys, corporate director of Pontypool RFC, has said the future of the club at the park is in “jeopardy”.
“This just goes to show that by being public about the problem may possibly have antagonised someone to try and destroy the lot,” he said yesterday.
“But as long as the ground is open access it’s going to attract this sort of behaviour. Something has to change. Our future at the park is at risk.”
The Friday-night fire was spotted by staff at Pontypool Active Living Centre around 9pm, but the commentary and media section of the Pontypool RFC main stand both suffered damage as a result.
Among the incidents plaguing the park are previous arson attacks on the club stand, where seats have also been ripped out, and needles on the pitch.
The issue has disgusted club officials and volunteers for years, with screwdrivers, nails and knife blades found sticking out of the try line in November 2012, and broken bottles driven into the field with sharp shards pointing upwards.
On Saturday Pontypool RFC put out a statement on its website.
It said: “Pontypool RFC is disappointed to announce that Pontypool Park was subjected to a further act of vandalism earlier this evening. The commentary and media section of the main stand has suffered significant fire damage as a result of a substantial fire emanating from a waste container. The fire has since been extinguished fully and police have attended the scene.
“This is the second arson attack that Pontypool Park has been subjected to in a matter of months, and Pontypool RFC will continue to communicate with Torfaen County Borough Council regarding this on-going situation.”
Anyone with information is asked to call 101.
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