Security boost for crime-hit ground

Extra security measures and new stands will be installed at a non-league Walsall football club hit by raids and damage.

The Paycare Ground - home of Darlaston Town FC - in Bentley Road North. PIC: Google Street View
The Paycare Ground - home of Darlaston Town FC - in Bentley Road North. PIC: Google Street View

Darlaston Town 1874 FC has been given the green light to erect 2.4 metre high fencing around its pitches at The Paycare Ground in Bentley Road North.

Bosses were also granted permission by Walsall Council planners to install three spectator and visitor stands which will hold around 50 people each.

In recent years, the club has suffered from break-ins, trespass and vandalism which has cost it thousands of pounds.

The club was promoted to the West Midlands (Regional) League Premier Division in 2019 and league rules require the additional stands and improved security measures to be in place at the ground.

Darlaston Town is concentrating on improving facilities at its current base and has been boosted by the granting of planning permission.

It moved to The Paycare Ground in 2015 and has a 25-year lease with Walsall Council to play there.

In the application, agents G&G Building Consultancy Ltd said: “The building has been broken into on two occasions over the last three years causing

several thousands of pounds damage and loss of property.

“Trespassing and unsocial behaviour is also a frequent occurrence on the site.

“The club has recently been promoted in the league and further promotion will require the additional security and spectator facilities in order to comply with the Football Association requirements.”

They added the club gets around 120 spectators at each home game and were not anticipating an increase in attendances with the new stands.

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