0 Rugby pitch is damaged ahead of charity match

On the eve of a charity match at Monmouth Rugby Football Club, mindless motorists took the opportunity to race around the town's pitch in the early hours.

Tyre marks on the pitch

Des Pugh

Two cars were captured on the Sports Association's CCTV cameras racing around the rugby pitch for four minutes at 2.38am recently.

Saturday was to see the Ted Senior Foundation's charity match take place and the ground had been neatly prepared by groundsman Gordon Grey and staff in the run up to the event.

Two small hatchback cars were seen to enter the pitch at the corner by the new Monnow Bridge and race around the pitch for four minutes before leaving the same way at 2.42am and head over the new bridge.

The footage was viewed by Gareth Hill from Netfit who installed the cameras at cost.

Andy Tabb explained the footage to the Beacon: " You could see the two cars - both small hatchback types. The trouble was that when they swung towards the cameras, their full beam headlight obliterated the view of their number plates".

He has emailed Gwent Police's CSO Joe Facchiano to see if the town's CCTV footage has picked up the cars.

Andy said that five of the cameras on the Sportsground "were funded by grants from the town council and Rotary Monmouth, the sixth one being funded with a grant from the Welsh FA to the football club".

Byron Hapgood, President of the Monmouth Rugby Football Club said: "I am aware that the Sports Association are working together with Monmouth police to identify the cars - I am confident with help we will find the culprits. The damage caused was quite simply mindless and, in my view, a case of vandalism against not just the sports clubs but also the community".

He went on to say "I am however pleased that with the help of many volunteers from Monmouth RFC we were able to repair and prepare the pitch to accommodate the planned Ted Senior Foundation game - Monmouth Combination v The TSF Barbarians. Thank you to all who made it such a special day".

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