VANDALS have attacked one of Huddersfield’s iconic sporting venues.
The pitchside at the old Fartown rugby ground has been ripped up by thieves trying to steal copper pipe.
Thieves struck twice in four days at Fartown Arena, the home of St Joseph’s Rugby Club.
First they stole underground heavy duty cable at the side of the pitch between two of the floodlights.
Then just days later they returned and raided the tuck shop inside the ground.
It comes five months after the old Huddersfield Supporters’ Club building behind the historic Fartown Pavilion was destroyed in a blaze.
Club registration secretary Stephen Eastwood said: “It seems to be one thing after another.
“Vandals burned down the supporters’ club and now they’ve caused quite a bit of damage with this.
“We’ve had some of the turf dug out near to the floodlights.
“They’ve pulled it up down the side of the pitch looking for the cables.
“They were after a bit of copper inside of them thinking it’s worth something.
“They’ve smashed the door locks off too – it seems every time we go down something else has happened.
“They came back for the tuck shop which we use for the junior and open age games – what next?” Now the club and Kirklees Parks and Open Spaces, which manages the arena and rents it to the club for matches and training, are appealing for information and witnesses to the thefts which have been reported to the police.
The first incident took place between the end of training last Wednesday night and the start of training on Thursday evening.
The second theft took place between the end of training last Thursday and Saturday morning when the players turned up for matches.
Around 20m of cable was removed by digging down into the ground around the base of the floodlights and pulling it through.
Fortunately the floodlights had been previously disconnected as they are to be replaced in the near future.
Then tea, coffee, soft drinks, crisps and sweets – which are sold on match days to raise money for the club – were taken when the pavilion was broken into, damaging the main door.
Mr Eastwood added: “As well as taking the tuck shop stock there are signs they had tried to steal more cable, but must have been disturbed.”
Sally White from Kirklees Parks and Open Spaces said it was likely the thieves had taken the cable to sell as scrap metal. She appealed to scrap merchants to be on the look out.
Anyone with information should contact the police on 0845 6060606 or Sally White on 01484 234021.