'Quite a shock' after car ploughs into side of social club
- Credit: Daniel Hickey
"God forbid what could have happened - there might have been people sitting right there."
That was the shocked reaction Wroxham Social Club's chairwoman had after seeing damage done to the Norwich Road building after a car crashed into a wall.
A car wreaked ploughed into a side wall in the middle of Tuesday afternoon, causing a gas leak.
Jean Barnett, a member for 30 years, said the crash meant the club was forced to close until insurers could carry out an assessment.
"It was quite a shock to walk in there and see it," she said. "You wouldn't think a car could hit the building like that and cause such damage inside.
"The radiator came off the wall, that's why it caused the gas leak and we had to wait for the gas people to come out and cap it.
"After Covid, we've been trying to put things into place and get us back on our feet.
"It has been a long journey, because we've got elderly members, and to get them coming back into the club has taken some time.
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"This has cost the club in more ways than one."
After the crash happened, locals were warned to keep their doors and windows shut, and the road was closed in both directions for several hours.
Mrs Barnett said the bar area and the toilets inside had been damaged, but the snooker area was fine.
Police tape was still in place across the front of the building on Thursday, and a gaping hole where the car smashed the brick wall was clearly visible.
No injuries were reported in the crash, which officers are investigating.
A spokesman for Cadent, East Anglia’s gas emergency service, said the incident had not caused a gas outage to nearby properties.
He said: "It emphasises the importance of acting fast should you ever smell gas, suspect carbon monoxide or notice damage to any gas pipes. If this ever happens, ring the national gas emergency service on 0800 111 999 immediately, day or night.”
Mrs Barnett said the building was built in 1910 and had originally been a men's reading room.
The club has almost 60 members and offers table tennis, outdoor bowls, snooker, quizzes, tea and cake meetings, bingo and other social events.
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