Community boxing club left counting the cost after vandals strike

Mark Westley PhotographY'Eastgate Boxing Club Rougham, Chairman Mick Bryant and Coaches Tim Wolstenholme and Dale Robertson check out the damage to the club caused by vandals. ANL-151002-230650009
Mark Westley PhotographY'Eastgate Boxing Club Rougham, Chairman Mick Bryant and Coaches Tim Wolstenholme and Dale Robertson check out the damage to the club caused by vandals. ANL-151002-230650009

Coaches at a community boxing club in West Suffolk have hit out at vandals who smashed windows and damaged a door at the venue.

Mick Bryant and Tim Wolstenholme say there was an attempted break-in at the Eastgate Boxing Club, in Blackthorpe, Rougham with ‘thugs’ damaging the front door and breaking eight panes of glass.

They even smashed a window of an area, which caters for youngsters and recently received a £4,000 revamp following a grant from Suffolk Community Foundation.

Mr Wolstenholme, a coach and administrator for the club, said: “It’s upsetting really for everyone involved. The local community are putting a lot into the club. Everyone volunteers, no-one gets paid so everything that’s made goes back into the club. We will rally together and won’t let a set back like this deter us .”

They are currently pricing up how much it will cost to repair the damage.

Mr Bryant, club chairman and coach, said he will try to do some of the work himself to reduce costs.

He said: “It’s terrible. We run a community club and it’s all for the kids. It’s a big shame really that they have to do something like that. It’s really poor to stoop as low.

“You get these setbacks and you just have to carry on.”

Mr Bryant started the club in 1981 and it has been based at Blackthorpe for about eight years. It has more than 100 members and takes on aspiring youngsters from the age of six. To join contact Mr Bryant on 01284 850683.