Roof collapse could cost football club

The Clubhouse roof of Long Melford Football Club has collapsed.
The Clubhouse roof of Long Melford Football Club has collapsed.

A football club is desperately hoping insurers agree to pay up after a roof collapsed in a bar following storm Doris.

On Friday, officials at Long Melford Football Club came in to find the ceiling had collapsed in the club house.

They had previously noticed water was coming in through the ceiling after the storm.

Initially, they thought they had sorted the problem, but now face a costly repair after the roof collapsed.

Club chairman Colin Woodhouse said the club’s insurance company had been out to assess the damage, with officials now desperately hoping they will agree to cover the costs.

If not, Mr Woodhouse said the club would look to set up a funding appeal.

Fortunately, the club has a secondary bar, so match day losses will be kept to a minimum, but, as well as repair costs, the club will also lose revenue from bookings in the hall which have had to be cancelled.

Mr Woodhouse said it was frustrating as repairing the building was not in the club’s long-term plans.

“It’s quite an old building so we are loathe to spend money on it.

“Longer term, we are hoping to replace the whole building, but that is some way off.”

If the insurance company is not willing to pay, club president Richard Kemp said: “We will have to scratch our heads to find another way of funding it. It’s very difficult to keep any club afloat these days.

“People don’t understand. We had officials come from Tottenham last year which cost us £300.

“We replaced four light bulbs in the floodlights and that cost £1,250. It just shows how difficult it can be running a football club, or any sports club.”

The club has said it has no estimates on when the damage will be repaired by and the bar can be reopened.

However, in the meantime, the other bar will continue to be used.