The Craigie Community Sports Arena in Dundee was opened on Friday, thanks to a near £300,000 investment from CashBack for Pitches.
The official opening of the £600,000 3G pitch facility, situated in the grounds of Craigie High School, was opened by Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Sport, Shona Robison MSP, following a long term project and fund-raising campaign led by the Craigie Community Sports Hub (CCSH).
The new pitch has absolutely transformed what was an obsolete blaes pitch and in the period since it opened to the public has proven hugely popular for football training, matches and coach education and also for rugby training.
In a fantastic example of partnership working, Craigie High School’s curricular PE and after school sport activity is greatly enhanced by the facility supporting such activity every weekday until CCSH use kicks in every evening.
The funding for the pitch, successfully secured by CCSH, included the major contribution from the CashBack for Pitches fund back in 2014 and sportscotland’s Sports Facilities Fund. CashBack is a Scottish Government programme which takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime, investing that into free activities and programmes for young people across Scotland.
There were also generous donations from the Robertson Trust, Gannochy Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation, Moffat Charitable Trust, the Scottish Football Partnership and Dundee City Council.
Cammy Watt, Scottish FA Facilities Manager said: “Everyone involved in the creation of the Craigie Community Sports Arena deserve huge congratulations for delivering this fantastic new 3G pitch.
“It’s been a long and sometimes challenging journey since the CashBack award was made - especially for those who offer their skills and time to Craigie Community Sports Club as volunteers.
"George Allan, who has led this project with great determination, deserves a special mention.
“He has pulled together club members and key partners, both local and national, to ensure this project came to fruition. Without committed people like George and his colleagues at our community clubs across Scotland, great days like today simply wouldn’t happen as often.
“It’s tremendous that this new 3G not only supports CCSC’s football activities, but also offers Craigie High School a new facility that already greatly enhances curricular PE.
“Partnership projects which result in facilities like this being utilised during the day as well as in the evenings are absolutely crucial in maximising use, anchoring football and wider sport in local communities and ensuring that investments made, in this instance by partners at Dundee City Council, sportscotland and CashBack, have the greatest possible impact.
“The Scottish FA looks forward to seeing an already great community club develop even further thanks to the increased capacity offered by the new pitch and the invaluable work of CCSC’s volunteers.”