THE COMMUNITY has rallied together after an arson attack in Shipston destroyed thousands of pounds worth of rugby equipment.
A shipping container owned by Shipston Rugby Club was set alight at the club’s Mayo Road ground overnight on Friday (April 13).
Its entire contents of training equipment used by youngsters, worth some £3,000, was destroyed in the attack which chairman Dan Scobie described as a ‘mindless act’.
He told The Observer: “It was a really unpleasant shock waking up on Saturday morning when we discovered what happened.
“I would ask the culprits to think about the 200 or so kids who have been impacted by this which is the hardest part about it.
“The club is solely run by volunteers and relies on donations, so they have also targeted a group of people who give up their time and money to support young people which makes it all the more upsetting.”
Mr Scobie set up a crowdfunding page to raise the money for replacement equipment, and donations from some 250 supporters have already raised over £6,000 – £2,000 over the club’s original target.
He said: “The response we have had from not just the Shipston community, but far and wide, has not only been about money but offers of help from local businesses and individuals who have put themselves forward has meant a lot and goes an awful long way to restoring our faith in people.”
He thanked supporters for their generosity in a heartfelt message on the crowdfunding page, and assured donations would go to supporting young people in Shipston with their rugby training.
Visit www.gofundme.com/buying-new-kit-for-kids to donate.
Anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area on Friday night or early Saturday morning should call police on 101.