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Ten years of vandals drives club to despair
Members of a bowls club have told how they have become victims of a 10-year campaign of vandalism.
During the summer months, up to 100 people use the finely manicured greens of the Crouch Bowling Club, in Seaford.
But when night falls, vandals descend on the pavilion, regularly smashing up the tiles on the roof. At other times youths play golf and football on the delicate lawn surface and scatter discarded alcohol bottles.
Now the club's committee are appealing to the town council for enough cash to get a CCTV camera installed at the club in East Street.
They hope the £1,700 scheme will not only deter the yobs but also help the police to bring those responsible for the damage to justice.
Vice-captain Len Peach said: "One night I was on my own in the club when I heard the banging on the roof. I ran outside and chased them off but we can't have someone sitting there every night.
"They also play golf and all sorts of the greens, which cost thousands of pounds each year to maintain. There is just no respect. At one stage we even had kids throwing stones at our female greenkeeper - it just beggars belief.
"We think CCTV is the way forward and might make these people think twice about what they are doing. I think parents should pay for damage caused by their children. It's one way of making them keep a closer eye on what their children are doing."
The bowls club is open every day during the season and hosts competitive league matches as well as social games between friends. Mr Peach added that the club had pledged to buy the mast for the camera if the council could find the rest of the cash.
He said: "We are not just getting the begging bowl out, we are working together with the council to try and solve this problem which is regularly costing us a lot of money."
Committee member David Burleigh said: "We've had kids up on the roof smashing up the tiles. It's just mindless vandalism and every time it costs hundreds of pounds to fix.
"We do have a camera that covers most of the green but we need one to give coverage of the roof so we can start catching these hooligans.
"This is such a friendly club and it is a social thing as much as a way of keeping active. It is a shame that these people are trying to ruin all that, but that is just the way of the world unfortunately."
The issue is due to be discussed by the community service committee of Seaford Town Council today, where councillors will decide whether to fund the CCTV scheme.
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