One of three Hibiscus Coast sports clubs attacked by vandals may be forced to shut.
Two attacks in as many weeks have rocked the Hibiscus Coast Athletics Club.
As a result, expensive repairs and replacement of gear may force the club to close, club president Lynda Hay says.
Vandals smashed shed roller doors at the club's Whangaparaoa College base about a month ago.
The club spent $700 on new locks but was hit again two weeks later with an attempted break-in and theft.
This time offenders could not get in, but they still smashed the door, which knocked over and damaged a barbecue inside.
The intruders then got through the roof of a second shed.
They stole equipment including starter pistols and a megaphone, and took a trolley used for transporting discus and shotputs.
On the same night, the Hibiscus Coast Raiders rugby league club and the Hibiscus Coast Football Club were also attacked.
Ms Hay says the athletics club's insurance excess is $1000, which is about the value of the gear taken, so the loss effectively comes out of club fees.
That is particularly disappointing because the club tries to keep fees low, at $30 for a full season.
"Parents just pay for it basically, because we can't claim on insurance, plus all the time fixing it," she says.
"It's just mindless."
Whangaparaoa Baptist Church, which founded the club, is helping with repairs and reinforcements. The Warehouse Whangaparaoa has donated a new barbecue.
Meanwhile, athletics club activities continue on Wednesday evenings, with children as keen as ever.
But Ms Hay says the attacks have endangered the club's future, or at least the participation of those who run it.
"The committee are all volunteers and we do this on top of our own jobs and family," she says.
"I've run the club for seven years - I'm not prepared to carry on next year. So I don't know if the club is going to be running."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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