Thieves steal from devastated football team days after arson

Mark Chapman bursar at Prebendal School right, and Andy Saint, groundsman by the remains of the pavillion. ks190288-2
Mark Chapman bursar at Prebendal School right, and Andy Saint, groundsman by the remains of the pavillion. ks190288-2

'Opportunist' thieves have stolen from a devastated Chichester football team, three days after the pavilion they used was razed to the ground by arsonists.

Vicky Tucker who helps run Whyke United said she and others working with the club had visited the site of the fire, in the playing fields off Avenue de Chartres to salvage some of the clubs belongings.

Staff and pupils at Prebendal, by the remains of the pavillion.ks190288-3

Staff and pupils at Prebendal, by the remains of the pavillion.ks190288-3

READ MORE: Police investigate as fire at Chichester school destroys building
She took out football kits, stopwatches and whistles - all reusable despite the fire - for the surviving equipment to be taken away and cleaned. The equipment was left inside the fenced-off area surrounding scorched pavilion.

When they returned to the site the equipment was gone.

Vicky said: "We were devastated. There was an awful lot of emotions. After the fire we thought 'let's regroup and keep going' and then you you have something like that done. I think it was smoke damaged stuff that was worth saving.

"We have worked so hard for so many years for the football club. Everyone came together as a community but [the theft] was the final straw.

The burnt out remains of the pavillion. ks190288-4

The burnt out remains of the pavillion. ks190288-4

"This afternoon (Thursday May 30) the fundraising is kicking back in. We're getting that orange back out there."

Since the fire, a crowd funding site has been set up to help the club and the school recuperate after the attack. At the time of writing, the clubs fundraising efforts sit at more than £500 of the £2,500 target.

READ MORE: Prebendal School Arson: Police seek youths seen running away from blaze
Vicky called the support 'absolutely amazing'.

"We have just had a phone call from Rossiter's who supply our trophies and they have reduced the bill by fire per cent.

"We are working really hard to get the six-a-side at the end of June up and running."

Rival teams also showed their support and donations came in from Littlehampton Town Youth, Barnham Trojans and Felpham Colts.

To find out more about the fundraiser, or to donate, click here.