Loughborough Football Club vandalised with a pick-axe in second lockdown attack

Loughborough football club was attacked by vandals again on Saturday, for the second time in a month.

They were captured on camera destroying changing facilities with a pick-axe, stealing footballs and littering the pitch.

Leicestershire police say they are aware of what happened and ask anyone with information to contact them. 

The cleanup operation is relying on the goodwill of volunteers and donations from supporters and the community. Credit: ITV Central

The community club's management said the damage was so bad, their first thought was to close down completely.

It's worth fighting for. We've had vandalism before over the years, but we've never had it as bad as this. This is the worst I've ever seen, and when I first saw it I thought it's too much. We're finished. We'll have to close down.

John Belton, Secretary, Loughborough FC

The football club says it urgently needs to raise £6,000 to stay afloat and repair the damages.

In the meantime, the cleanup is being assisted by a local branch of a national bereavement charity.

Volunteers from SANDS Loughborough have been helping with the repairs Credit: ITV Central

Sands is a stillbirth and neonatal death charity which helps bereaved family members come to terms with the loss of unborn or just born children. Sands United uses football to help men open up about their grief.

The Loughborough branch had been using the community football club as its base, and those fathers and uncles involved were quick to offer their help with the cleanup, many of them being professional tradesmen.

Luke Wright is the manager of SANDS Loughborough and lost his son ten years ago. He said he has only been able to open up about his grief in the last 18 months, due to the help and support of the group.

I'm not a talker. I'm not one for showing my emotions or feelings. But the amount of men we have on board that have said it's helped them sit down and talk to their partners about how losing their child has affected them.

Luke Wright, Manager, SANDS Loughborough

John Belton, club secretary of Loughborough FC, said he had been "bowled over" by the actions of the local bereavement group, as the men "have been coming down every weekend to help them put things right."

These men describe themselves as a brotherhood dedicated to supporting each other through the worst times.

A JustGiving fundraiser has also been set up to help the club raise enough money to repair the damage.