A NORTH-East football club was broken into and trashed by vandals - but not before they stopped to make themselves a cup of tea.

Northallerton Football Club’s new hospitality suite, due to open next season, was discovered the next morning with its entrance door and windows smashed and walls and furniture damaged after the incident.

The vandals smashed mugs and threw others out of the windows, smashing them in the process, but only after using them to make themselves a cup of tea..

Afterwards, they used a side grinder on the kitchen unit and cut through one of the seat cushions on the chairs and, soon after, chucked brown sauce and milk around the room.

The Northern Echo:

Tim Swale, commercial manager at Northallerton Football Club, said: “They have damaged the entrance door, which was reinforced window, but then they’ve actually made themselves cups of tea inside.

“They then smashed one of the mugs through one window, chucked tea down the walls and then they’ve gone hitting the walls and windows with the chairs inside, smashing a further two windows.

“They then got a side grinder and have gone along the kitchen unit with a side grinder and then cut through one of the seat cushions, so it’s just been wanton damage really.

“Then they proceeded to tip the brown sauce and chuck the milk and teabags and everything in the kitchen on the floor, they made quite a mess of everything.

“The volunteers turned up the same day and the next day and did a fantastic clean up job, but we are going to have to get the decorators in and do the walls, and either get a new kitchen workbench or just make do with what we have really, it’s a pity.

“Nothing was stolen, they went into another storeroom and smashed the windows in that, and they’ve pulled things out and chucked things on the floor and there was tea service in there that they chucked that out, but there doesn’t look to be anything stolen.

“It’s just been damage and whether they stayed the night or not I don’t know, but I went the next morning at about half-eight in the morning and there was glass all over the place.

The Northern Echo:

“Of course, there were no keys for the door, so they had to climb in and out through the door windows.”

The club has started a fundraiser to help repair the damage by opening a JustGiving page which has reached £2,465, surpassing its initial £2,000 goal.

Mr Swale added: “The fundraising has gone well, the chairman set it up on Facebook, it’s a JustGiving page, and as far as I know we’ve got to the £2,000 goal we were trying to get so that we could carry out repairs so it’s just a matter now of waiting for the tradesman to come and do the bits that need done.

“We have the first football match with the reserve team is on Saturday so I’m hoping that we’ll be done and tidied up by then.

“We have had some lovely support and goodwill towards the club, I’ve only been involved in the last 12 months, but there’s been supporters there for years and years, and the support with coming and helping us and that has been really good.

“It shows the club is in a lot of people’s hearts really which is very good.

“The sponsors have been paying money into the club but of course they’ve not had the pay back for it yet, so social media wise we’ve been trying to get the coverage to people and through word of mouth we try and support the people who support the club.

“I think after this weekend, it will be a tester for Covid because there’s so many people about at present, it’ll either spike again or we’ll get over it and we’ll start moving.

“I’m not expecting paying crowds to come in until next season now, but we’re trying to do a few open days, I’ve tried to arrange a vintage car club to come in July so we can show people around so they can see what we’ve done.

“It’s really just a thank you to the sponsors and the people who support us to say that we’re still here but it’s as difficult for us as it is for them, so we’ll see how it goes.

“We desperately need volunteers to come and help us on match days and things because we need the younger people in, but the younger people are the ones with families, so they don’t have as much time.”