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Facility maintenance at Steins Thistle AFC is to be improved after the Scottish Football Partnership (SFP) issued a grant, saving the club thousands of pounds each year.

The club, established in 1972, has a CashBack for Communities funded 3G astroturf training pitch which needs regular upkeep.

Thanks to the funding, an in-house maintenance regime has been established to ensure the life-span of the surface is maximised.

Graham Wright, club treasurer, explained: “Outsourcing this regular maintenance work would have cost the club around £2,800 per annum so the economies are not difficult to calculate.

“SFP were very easy to deal with and supportive of what Steins have done in the past and are trying to do in the future. We are extremely thankful for their support."

Scottish FA facilities manager Cameron Watt praised the SFP for their “fantastic support they offer our grassroots community football clubs”.

Cameron explained that during the 1980s and 90s, synthetic pitches were viewed as being “maintenance free” resulting in deteriorating pitches today.

He added: “A good maintenance regime can often be the difference between a surface lasting six years or ten years.”

Andrew Gilchrist, Scottish FA Central regional manager, said: "The SFP are a fantastic organisation for supporting grassroots football. Facility upkeep is of vital importance for the game in Scotland and I'm delighted the well-used training pitch at Steins will last long into the future."

Steins Thistle has Quality Mark Community status meaning it has reached the Scottish FA’s second highest level for grassroots club accreditation.

It has the National Player Pathway in place meaning it has young people playing at specific formats for their age and stage of development.

It also has a high level of coach education with recipients of the Scottish FA’s child coaching certificates at the club.

The Positive Coaching Scotland programme – which aims to develop a football culture where young players are developed positively, learn to win through effort and develop skills for life through football – is integrated into the club’s ethos.