South East Wales

Maesteg rugby club's hopes after arson attack

Inside the damaged clubhouse
Image caption The fire destroyed club memorabilia

Officials at one of Wales' oldest rugby clubs say they are hopeful of starting the new season at home after a deliberate fire damaged its main stand.

Maesteg RFC chairman David Morgan said a limited supply of electricity should be in place so the changing rooms could be used.

Police are continuing to investigate the blaze earlier this month which came after a recent refurbishment.

Flames engulfed the first floor bar in the clubhouse and stand.

"The insurance company is dealing with it and we are doing as much as we can in clearing up," Mr Morgan said.

"We've got no power or heating whatsoever and we are trying to get a limited supply of electricity for the changing rooms.

"The rest of the stand and clubhouse is a major job and won't be ready for the foreseeable future but the structure itself is OK."

Mr Morgan said the members' lounge on the first floor was a "total wipe out" while the rest of the stand was affected by smoke and water damage.

The cellar was also damaged, along with some of the club memorabilia in the sponsors' lounge.

Maesteg's Division Two West season starts away to Skewen on Saturday 7 September, with the first home match due to take place the following week against Aberystwyth, and Seven Sisters visiting two weeks later.

If the club is not able to get a workable supply of electricity in time it will try to switch those first home games to away matches with the help of the Welsh Rugby Union.

If that is not possible the club will look to use the changing rooms at the leisure centre over the road.

Clubhouse facilities are being supplied at a pub nearby.

Supporters will be able to use the other stand at the ground to watch matches.

Image caption Witnesses said flames were 'pouring out of the building'

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