A BRADFORD cricket club and nearby residents acted fast to prevent unauthorised access to the ground after new gates were removed from the entrance.

Members of Bankfoot Cricket Club were worried that vehicles could get onto the site, so dug a trench across the entrance – and put an old car in the ditch as a further obstacle.

A club member and local resident said: “Just before going to bed, I noticed some new gates had been taken off.

“The area was active that night and so a few of the neighbours went round to guard the opening.

“We dug a trench and then put my old car in the ditch and took its wheels off.”

He said in mid-April, the club had reported some incidents to police.

One was criminal damage and another a burglary of the club’s score box.

He said: “A lot of hard work has gone into the clubhouse but we had to cancel two games and couldn’t open the clubhouse.

“The police were around so much and to be honest they were really good.”

Another club committee member said £1,500 will have to be spent on a new gate. While the new gate is on order, concrete blocks have been put in place at the entrance.

He also said the club had lost £3,000 to £4,000 in bar takings as concerns surrounding the situation had coincided with the time at which the club had first planned to open the bar to outdoor customers.

“To us, that’s a hell of a lot of money.

“It’s been a stressful fortnight for the club and the community.”

Inspector Andy Thornton, of the Bradford South Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We will follow up any possible lines of enquiry regarding the small number offences reported in the area.”

Club members said they had feared that travellers who were pitched on a nearby site in Odsal could move onto the ground.

But a spokesperson for Bradford Council said: “The travellers have moved on from the site and a clear-up operation has been undertaken.

“The council is also looking at the ongoing security of the site.”