OFFICIALS with Crossgates Primrose say they have been left shocked after their club was targeted by callous thieves.

The junior football team's home ground at Humbug Park was hit by raiders last week, who made off with equipment including a 50" television, three soundbars, a petrol strimmer and several rolls of roofing felt.

Police Scotland said that they have launched an investigation into the incident, which is thought to have taken place in the early hours between Sunday February 12 and Tuesday February 14.

Primrose, who play in the South Division of the East Region leagues, returned to the junior set-up in the summer having been placed in abeyance by the Scottish Junior Football Association (SJFA) in November 2015 that they could no longer continue due to a lack of committee members.

That situation had changed by April last year as a new committee, headed by chairman Frazer Martin, breathed new life into the club, which also has a prospering youth set-up.

Speaking to the Times, he said the equipment stolen – particularly items used to maintain the pitch, which was also damaged – would be expensive to replace, commenting: "They took a TV, soundbars and some maintenance stuff that we use for the ground. It will be expensive to replace; things like strimmers don't come cheap. We'll get our thinking caps on and take stock.

"We've been fairly lucky in years before in the village; we've never had a problem with vandalism, let alone a break in. We are shocked and surprised and is certainly not something we would have expected. Whether it has been opportunistic or someone has been around and noticed some pickings to be had, we can't be certain.

"We initially thought it might have been kids but they took a wheelbarrow and took the items over the pitch to the far side, making their way out through a gate into trees and coming out where the playpark is. I imagine there was a care there so it sounds like someone has been looking to make a quick and easy buck."

He continued: "It looks like they have gained access through a window; there's no vandalism. The main keys to the building were held by key holders, but keys for the containers where we store equipment and maintenance stuff were held inside the locked building. They've gone and there's some damage to the pitch.

"We had already started to plan for next season on the financial side, but we hadn't budgeted for things like new strimmers. I hope that people will be able to help in the short-term; the support from the community and businesses since we came back has been excellent.

"It is unfortunate but it will not knock us off our stride."

A Police Scotland spokesman added: "Enquiries are ongoing in relation to theft by housebreaking at Crossgates Primrose's Humbug Park, which occurred between February 12-15. Officers with Dunfermline CID are investigating."