Devastating damage at Sussex football club sparks plea for help

It never rains but it pours. And when it does, it just makes things worse for Peacehaven and Telsocmbe Football Club.

Monday, 22nd February 2021, 9:35 am
The ceiling has caved in in the Peacehaven clubhouse

They are already battling to raise money for a much-needed new clubhouse roof – and now rainwater has caused a ceiling to collapse and cause new damage.

The club, who play in the Southern Combination premier division, are appealing for financial help as their under-eights lead attempts to raise the money they need to secure their home.

Club chairperson Sue Norwood said: “Peacehaven FC built their current home over 50 years ago, through utilising an old builder’s unit and then adding exterior walls and a roof on to it.

A close-up of the damage

“It has since been used as a clubhouse for all our teams and by the local community. Recently we opened up for school meals during the pandemic and supported the local CATs after-school club to give them a temporary home and also additional space.

“Over the years the maintenance of the club has always been the odd job here and there.

“As anyone who runs a club knows, there is very little spare cash to do major works.

“Five years ago we became a community club and now we’re owned by the community but run on their behalf by the board.

The cave-in led to rainwater damaging the TV

“We have worked hard to raise funds to replace the roof that had started to become a built-in shower and we managed to raise £12,000 through fundraising and gain a grant to complete the £40,000 bill.

“Unfortunately as this work began it was identified that one of external walls was being held up by the original roof.

“This wall had been allowing rainwater in unbeknown to us over the years and had soaked all the internal wood structure and the plywood.

“We’re applying for a grant to fix this through the FA but again we need to raise a further £6,000 to meet the full requirements.

The debris left in the clubhouse

“In the meantime, when we visited the club a couple of weeks ago to run the water to prevent Legionnarie’s disease during lockdown, we found the internal ceiling had fallen in.

“It was devastating to see, leaving a gaping hole. Water had damaged the television and the speakers we use for parties. Overseeing a volunteer-run club is a lot of hard work, especially during Covid-19 as we have no easy way of raising additional funds for incidents like this.

“Any help or support to help us fix our ceiling, and replace the damaged electrical equipment will so greatly be appreciated.”

The club’s under-eights are doing their bit to raise money by staging a sponsored 350k run/walk.