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Burglars ransacking Crusaders Rugby Club casts shadow over victory against Holt

PUBLISHED: 13:38 12 March 2018 | UPDATED: 13:38 12 March 2018

Burglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete Blinkhorn

Burglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete Blinkhorn

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Burglars raiding Crusaders Rugby Club failed to stop the team playing on and beating Holt on Saturday.

Burglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete BlinkhornBurglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete Blinkhorn

Between 5pm on Friday evening and 9.30am on Saturday morning, thieves ransacked the clubhouse bar in Little Melton after breaking in using an angle grinder.

They took what they could carry including alcohol, a laptop, and a charity collection tin for the Wooden Spoon charity - who help disadvantaged and disabled children.

Despite the setback the club said play must go on. The first XV beat Holt 28-26, but the pre-match lunch for 50 people had to be cancelled.

“People knuckled down and showed their spirit,” said club secretary Nick Loone. “We were pretty determined we were not going to make the day any worse than it already was.”

Burglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete BlinkhornBurglars broke into the Crusaders Rugby Club and stole alcohol, cash and a laptop. Picture: Pete Blinkhorn

He added it was difficult to put a price on the thefts and the damage.

“We first noticed when the youth side went out for a training session first thing Saturday morning,” he said.

“They cut their way through the sliding metal external shutters and used an angle grinder to break in through the PVC window.

“That got them into the clubhouse. They then kicked down a waist high stable door to go under the bar and get anything they could carry away.

“They are just low lives. They obviously came equipped so we are now going to have to look at other security measures.”

The pre-match lunch had to be cancelled as the club did not want to disrupt a crime scene.

Mr Loone added: “We had to take a pragmatic decision. It is a bit of a rugby tradition for home games we have a pre-match lunch. Holt were very supportive and understanding, we have to say.

“At one time we didn’t even know if we were going to be allowed to go into the changing facilities. Holt were going to change in the bus should they have needed to.

“People were a little shell shocked but we will pick ourselves up and get back on track.”

A spokeswoman for Norfolk Police said: “Unknown persons have forced entry and various items have been stolen including alcohol, a laptop computer and a small amount of cash.”

Investigations are ongoing. Anyone with any information should contact police on 101, or alternatively Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where information can be left anonymously.


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