Trophies stolen and buildings damaged in burglary at Leamington archery club
A Leamington archery club is facing an uncertain future after burglars damaged buildings and stole Â£30,000 worth of antique trophies and equipment.
Between 9pm on Monday November 25 and the early hours of Tuesday November 26, burglars were able to break into buildings at Royal Leamington Spa Archery Society (RLSAS) based at The Crofts off Bericote Road.
They damaged the buildings in the process, and ended up stealing archery trophies with high sentimental value as well as archery equipment, tools and generators.
The break-in was discovered by society chair Martyn Ellis.
He said: "There were a few of us down there on Monday night - we were shooting until about 8.40pm and left at 9.
"I then went down just before 3pm on Tuesday. I got halfway down the field when I realised something was wrong - the doors were all halfway open."
Martyn then inspected the buildings to see what had happened. He realised equipment, such as a Honda generator and two bows, had been taken.
But he was particularly sad to see the burglars stole many trophies from the Leamington And Midland Counties Championship, some of which date back to the 1800s.
He added: "We were horrified to find that a large number of trophies, dating back over 160 years and which have great sentimental value, were among the missing items.
"The damage to the property is expected to take weeks to repair, leaving club members with very limited facilities."
The club had recently been dealt a blow when Old Leamingtonians Rugby Club, who allow RLSAS to use its land at The Crofts, told the archers they would have to relocate by May 2019 after its agreement with Wasps RFC to establish a training base on their land.
The land used by RLSAS will now be used by Old Leamingtonians' juniors. But RLSAS has yet to find a new site for the society.
Martyn said this news combined with the break-in had caused a lot of distress to its members.
Anyone with any information about the burglary should call Warwickshire Police on 101, quoting incident number 241 of November 27.