Storeroom at cricket club in Barnsley may need to be rebuilt after arson attack

A storeroom was damaged in an arson attack at Higham Cricket Club, near Barnsley
A storeroom was damaged in an arson attack at Higham Cricket Club, near Barnsley
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A storeroom set alight at a South Yorkshire cricket club may have to be rebuilt because of the extent of the damage.

It was torched at Higham Cricket Club, near Barnsley, on Sunday night.

A storeroom was damaged in an arson attack at Higham Cricket Club, near Barnsley

A storeroom was damaged in an arson attack at Higham Cricket Club, near Barnsley

Equipment including fertiliser for the outfield was destroyed in the blaze, which was started just days after a storage unit at another cricket club was also set alight.

Local residents spotted the fire on Royd Lane, Higham, and dialled 999.

The fire at Eckington Cricket Club overnight on Monday into Tuesday was started after thieves raided a storage unit and stole £12,000 worth of cutting equipment, including mowers and strimmers.

Most of the equipment was taken away from the club by the culprits but some was set alight on the outfield, damaging the surface.

The vandals drove across a field to get to and from the club without attracting attention.

Police probes into both incidents are underway.

Dan Bamforth, a junior development coach at Higham Cricket Club, said he was disappointed with the latest arson attack.

“If anything good has come from this it is that lots of local residents and people from the local pub saw the fire and have volunteered to come to the club this weekend to help us get ready for the start of the season,” he said.

“It happened at a bad time, with just three weeks to go before the start of the season and at a time when we are traditionally very busy getting the club ready, so it’s extra work that we will have to do but I am sure there will be plenty of volunteers to help.”

He said the storeroom doubles up as a base for the cricket scorer on rainy days.

Mr Bamforth, who is also a cricket club committee member, said Yorkshire County Cricket Club offers discretionary grants to help clubs deal with vandalism.

“We are going to apply for a grant in case we need to rebuild the storeroom. Firefighters deemed it unfit for use when they examined it on the night of the fire but we need to get a builder to have a look at it to see if there is any hope of salvaging it,” he added.

Officials at Eckington Cricket Club have issued an appeal for donations of any spare equipment to help them prepare their outfield and wicket before the start of the new season.

The first team was promoted at the end of last season to the Derbyshire Premier League.

Anyone with information about the Higham fire should call South Yorkshire Police on 101.

To pass on information about the blaze at Eckington call Derbyshire Police on 101.

Crimestoppers can be contacted on 0800 555111.