Trashed community centre handed lifeline by rugby club

Paul Farrell, Emlyn Craven, Kingsley, Charlie and Alfie, at Boothtown Terriers junior RFC, Grantham Road, Boothtown
Paul Farrell, Emlyn Craven, Kingsley, Charlie and Alfie, at Boothtown Terriers junior RFC, Grantham Road, Boothtown

A Halifax community centre that was landed in jeopardy when vandals caused thousands of pounds worth of damage has been resurrected by a junior rugby club.

Thieves stole a mobility scooter, a projector and a Wii video game console from Boothtown Centre last June in a merciless ransacking of the community asset.

But in the wake of the raid, newly established rugby league club Boothtown Terriers Juniors, which was looking for a home, took over the lease of the building and brought it back into use.

Terriers coach Paul Farrell said: “We approached Boothtown Partnership and asked if we helped clean it could we use it but it was more than that, they were happy to sign it over.

“They were very happy it would be put to use for the purpose it was there for.”

The club’s junior team started training in August last year, but has been playing officially in the Yorkshire junior league since february this year.

Mr farrell said: “it is going fantastically. We have two teams up and running – an under-9s on Saturday and an under-10s on Sunday.

“Both are having a good start to the season and we’re looking at starting an under-7s in the next couple of weeks.”

The lease arranged with Calderdale Council, which owns the land on which the building sits, is for five years, but Mr farrell said there was an option to extend it beyond that period.

The centre, which was established with grants from local businesses and money raised by the people of Boothtown, had been home to many football teams, children’s clubs, computer classes, cookery courses and other groups.

But the number of groups and classes making use of the facilities had diminished in the years prior to the ransacking incident.

Anyone interested in signing their children up to the club can call Mr Farrell on 07936 641144 or visit the Boothtown Terriers Juniors facebook page.