Town mayor Sarah Parker-Khan and (left) Mel Stride MP (centre) promoting Ashburton CC's crowdfunding appeal, launched by Lloyd White (right), following a series of break-ins at the club

ASHBURTON’S crowdfunding appeal towards repair and renewal costs after break-ins at the pavilion has been given a helping hand by the club’s local MP.

Mel Stride, the Conservative MP for Central Devon, dropped in on the club with Ashburton MP Sarah Parker-Khan to meet record-breaking first-team batsman Lloyd White.

Ashburton may have experienced problems off the field, but White recently became the first Devon League batsman to register two double hundreds in a career.

Burglars left the club with a bill for more than £2,000 for repairs and replacements, part of which will be covered by insurance.

White said policy excesses and contributions towards betterment as well as enhanced security measures will tot up quite a bill.

“The break-ins are the first we have experienced in about 15 years but they’ve really hurt us,” said White.

“Insurance excesses, the likely increase in future premiums and gap between what we might get back for the old machinery compared to what new machinery will cost, will leave a big hole in the club’s finances.

“We’ve been really touched by the support from members, neighbouring clubs and the wider community, with 20 contributions worth £540 so far - we’re hoping to reach £1,000.”

Mr Stride  put his hand in his pocket to help the club and urged others to do the same.

“The cricket club is a huge part of the community in Ashburton, offering more than 80 youngsters a safe and enjoyable place to play a great sport,” said Mr Stride.

Mr Stride said to make a donation visit the club’s JustGiving page, which is”

High on the club’s shopping list are CCTV cameras, improved motion sensitive lighting and a full alarm system to help improve future security.

Devon & Cornwall Police have been invited to use the club’s  Varwell Field ground if the want to carry out training for dogs and their handlers.