A STRETCHER used for Ballymena United matches has been destroyed in an arson attack by vandals at the Ballymena Showgrounds, a councillor says.
TUV councillor Matthew Armstrong said: “On Monday night, a small fire was started in the tunnel area of the Showgrounds complex where rubbish and other debris were collected and set alight.
“Most regrettable however was a stretcher being destroyed in the fire which is a vital part of match day medical apparatus and will have to be replaced at considerable cost.
“The Showgrounds is one of the premier facilities within the borough which continues to seek and attract investment and I would appeal for there to be no more such incidents so that we can all take pride in helping it remain a flagship sporting venue.
“I have spoken to Council Officers, and am assured that every effort possible is being made through a range of measures to deter and prevent such activity as far as humanly possible on such a vast site, especially outside of event times and normal office hours.
“Thanks must go to the Council team on site who spent yesterday undertaking the clean up and I hope that it will be the last time they are called upon to do so,” said the councillor.
A spokesperson for Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, who own the Showgrounds, told ‘Ballymena Daily’: “It’s extremely disappointing that damage has been caused to an area of Ballymena Showgrounds.
“The damage is being assessed to see what level of repairs need to take place and security measures will be increased.
“We would encourage anyone with information in relation to this incident to report it to police on 101.”