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Children's football trophies damaged by two boys

A break-in that left a grassroots football club's end-of-season trophies destroyed was committed by two boys, police have said.

Witney Vikings team managers found that six boxes of trophies had been destroyed after the club's storage container was ransacked at about 18:40 BST on Thursday.

Thames Valley Police said it attended the incident, at Burwell Meadow, and identified two boys as the culprits.

Police said the boys were then given "strong words of advice", and "helped clear up the mess" they had created.

The six boxes of trophies, as well as a bag of footballs, were thrown from the container into a nearby basketball court.

Each box contained 12 trophies worth £500.

With 40 teams and about 725 players, the club is one of the largest grassroots youth football clubs in the Witney area and run entirely by about 100 volunteers.

Club chairman Steve Bott previously told the BBC that every child got a personalised trophy at the end of every season, as some teams might not be able to win leagues or cup competitions.

He said: "It takes the club around eight weeks to organise those trophies."

"Now six teams (boys and girls) have no trophies."

Oxfordshire county councillors Liam Walker and Ted Fenton have agreed to cover the cost of replacements through the Councillor Priority Fund.

Mr Fenton, who represents Witney West and Bampton, said: "It would be a good use of the fund to try to reduce the disappointment for the youngsters."

Mr Walker called the incident "mindless vandalism" and praised the community coming together in support of the club.

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