There was devastation overnight after a serious fire breaks out at non league club Tunbridge Wells with donations raised to fund repairs.
Photos were uploaded to social media, showing the fire which took place at the clubhouse in with firefighters at the scene.
Smoke and flames could be seen coming from the Culverden Stadium with the club and community going through such a tough time this week.
Absolutely Heartbreaking scenes tonight as our wonderful clubhouse burns away 😪
— TWFCSupporters (@TWFCsupporters) January 13, 2023
The club said via Twitter: “Tunbridge Wells FC can confirm that there has been a serious fire at the clubhouse on Thursday evening. “Thankfully no-one was injured. The club would like to thank Kent Fire and Rescue Service for all of their efforts.”
“At approximately 2100 on the evening of Thursday 12th January. Kent Fire and Rescue were notified of a fire in the clubhouse of Tunbridge Wells Football Club (TWFC) situated in Culverden Down.
“Kent Fire and Rescue attended the scene and worked to extinguish the fire over a number of hours.
“The building was handed back to club officials at around midnight. Inspection of the clubhouse by board members in attendance revealed a scene of almost complete destruction.
“It was immediately evident that the clubhouse would be unusable for the foreseeable future.
“Work has been ongoing through the course of Friday 13th January to secure the site.
“Despite this work, the clubhouse is in a dangerous state and we would urge supporters and members of the public to avoid the building footprint and the immediate vicinity.
“The club cannot accept responsibility for anyone trying to access these areas.
“Kent Fire and Rescue were unable to provide a definitive cause for the fire although preliminary indications suggest the blaze was caused by an electrical fault.
“Investigations are continuing. The club is also working to understand the extent of any recoverable losses.
“TWFC will be seeking to postpone the home fixture currently scheduled for Tuesday 17th January against Erith and Belvedere. Arrangements for other forthcoming home fixtures will be announced in due course.
“The away fixture at Welling Town tomorrow (Saturday 14th January) will proceed as planned.
“The club are also working with those who had functions booked at the clubhouse with respect to making alternative arrangements.
“This is a dark day in a dark week for all those associated with Tunbridge Wells Football Club. Thankfully nobody was injured by this catastrophic fire.
“The club is incredibly grateful for the kind offers of support and assistance from across the football family and the wider community. We will need that support over the coming days, weeks and months. The club will be putting in place fund raising measures, details of which will be communicated in due course.”
Phil Allcorm, an administrator with the club, said as per KentOnline: “It’s a real blow. Obviously it was dark last night so we haven’t been able to fully assess the damage.
“We will be going over today to see how bad it is.
“We were alerted about 9.30pm. Apparently people playing football on a 3G pitch at a nearby school saw the flames and phoned it in.
“At the moment we don’t know the cause or even where it started.
“The loss of the building will be very difficult because we hire it out for functions – my own children had a birthday party there just recently.
“We had a lot of bookings lined up that will now probably have to be cancelled.”
Club supporter Marc Gilbert launched a donation page to help the club pay damage costs.
He writes on the page: “The club house had only recently been refurbished thorough a lot of time and effort personally from the club chairman and club secretary and other club officers and supporters.”This is terrible situation and any help no matter how small would be a massive help to get the club back up on its feet.”
You can help the club by donating something whether it’s small or large by clicking HERE.
KENT FIRE AND RESCUE SERVICE SAY
Kent Fire and Rescue Service was called to Culverden Down, in Tunbridge Wells, to reports of a fire at Culverden Stadium.
Four fire engines and a bulk water carrier attended, and firefighters wearing breathing apparatus tackled a fire in the clubhouse. Kent Police also attended.
There were no reported injuries, and the cause of the fire is being investigated.
Thursday 12 January 2023
Thursday 12 January 2023
Fire engines: 4
Partner agencies: Kent Police
Equipment: PPE – Breathing apparatus, Firefighting – Compressed air foam system (CAFs), Firefighting – High-pressure hose reel jet, Firefighting – Main jet (hose)
Special support vehicles: Bulk water carrier
This comes in the same week a 75-year-old male who was struck by a van nearby the stadium sadly died.
It happened in Culverdon Down in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, at 17:15 GMT on the 7th of January, and involved a white Volkswagen Transporter van.
He died in hospital on Wednesday, and police continue to appeal for witnesses, particularly among people leaving the nearby with the incident taking place after Tunbridge Wells v Erith Town.
A 55-year-old man arrested over the collision has been bailed.
This is what social media users said at the devastation after a serious fire breaks out at the non league club with donations raised to fund repairs…
@Supporters4RFC: Sorry to see this. Totally devastating. A week to forget for everyone associated with Tunbridge Wells FC.
@fc_hawkenbury: Having had close ties with @Tun_Wells_FC over many years, all at Hawkenbury Football Club are devastated at this awful news. Anything we can do to help please get in contact.
@StylesyR: Really sad news to wake upto this morning, some great memories and times shared in there, glad nobody is injured. 🔴⚪️
@MarkHay62472928: Omg that’s terrible, hopefully not to much damage? if there is anything we can do to help please ask, Holmesdale FC
@fatpantsMFC: A very sad sight seeing it last night but hopefully the football community and the community as a whole will rally round and support the club in it’s time of such need #ohtunbridgewells @Tun_Wells_FC
@cafc_michael: Awful to see this 😩
@IsaacStatue: Gutted for you. A great club
@keith68ginger: Sad sad sight 😢
@SevenoaksTownFC: Sorry to here this terrible news. If we can help in anyway including hosting your 1st team matches for a while just let us know. #footballfamily @SCEFLeague @IsthmianLeague @KentFA
@ekctafc: Awful news, so glad no one was hurt, very much hope this fantastic local club can get back on its feet as soon as possible.
@LordswoodFC: Terrible to hear, hope you are back up and running as soon as possible 🧡🖤
@whitstabletown: So sorry to hear this, glad no one was hurt. Hope you can get back up and running soon. 🦪
@MarkAEverson: Goodness me, been a rough few days for you guys.
@fatpantsMFC: Heartbreaking 😞 but many people will help rebuild, support a great club at the heart of its community 👍
@AndyWragg2: That, and with the awful news regarding one of your supporters, really hoping you can put this week behind you. A great club.
@aylesford_fc: Awful to hear this. Most importantly though no one was hurt . If you need anything please reach out @aylesford_fc we will be happy to help.
@SimonRudkins: So sorry to see this but glad no one was injured. Best wishes and hope you can get everything sorted very soon 🤞❤️