Foot­ball com­mu­nity helps blaze-hit club

Accrington Observer - - NEWS - STE­FAN JAJECZNYK

THE foot­ball com­mu­nity has stepped in to sup­port a Hyn­d­burn youth team, whose equip­ment was de­stroyed in a fire.

Burn­ley FC of­fered to do­nate train­ing kit and equip­ment to Clay­ton Park Rangers FC, af­ter a garage, where they kept their gear, burned down in a ‘sus­pi­cious’ fire, as re­ported in last week’s Ob­server.

Ac­cring­ton Stan­ley and the Lan­cashire FA have also pledged help.

The Clay­ton club set up a Just­giv­ing page in a bid to raise £800 for the lost equip­ment.

Dar­ren Bent­ley, Burn­ley FC press of­fi­cer, said he is from the area and won­dered what they could do af­ter spot­ting the ap­peal fol­low­ing the fire.

He said: “I spoke to the academy and they said they could do­nate some balls and bibs, and another col­league has a full ju­nior kit to give.

“It’s the least we could do for a well-es­tab­lished, well-known club.”

Dar­ren has also asked that the club con­tact him to ar­range for the young play­ers to come to the Clarets’ train­ing ground to be pre­sented with their new equip­ment by some of the club’s Pre­mier League stars.

Rangers have also re­ceived £500 from the Lan­cashire FA.

Gareth Cross, Clay­ton Park Rangers club sec­re­tary, said: “It’s to­tally mind-bog­gling, we’re still try­ing to get our heads around it all, but we’re re­ally pleased and over­whelmed with the sup­port.

“It has well and truly ex­ceeded our ex­pec­ta­tions. When Burn­ley got in touch, we couldn’t be­lieve it. I was shell­shocked and thought ‘this isn’t re­ally hap­pen­ing!”

Gareth, 37, said Ac­cring­ton Stan­ley had also do­nated a signed ball for the club to auc­tion as part of a fundrais­ing event planned for Novem­ber 17.

Lan­cashire FA chair­man Roger De No­brega said: “When it was brought to our at­ten­tion of the club’s plight we had to try to help in some way. We hope the do­na­tion can be used by the club to pur­chase new kit and equip­ment and en­sure foot­ball can con­tinue to be played by the large num­ber of play­ers and vol­un­teers in­volved with Clay­ton Park Rangers FC.”

Lan­cashire po­lice con­firmed that in­ves­ti­ga­tions into the fire on Che­quers in Clay­ton-leMoors at around 7.40pm on Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 22, are still on­go­ing.

Gareth Cross with the garage de­stroyed in a ‘sus­pi­cious’ fire

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