At an EGM on Thursday 25th February, the Scottish Borders Junior FA made history with all member clubs agreeing thjat all clubs joining the association must gain the Scottish FA Quality Mark Standard award as part of theirmembership criteria.

A unanimous vote means that any new members must attain the award within 18 months of joining the leagues.

Current member clubs have been given a grace period to work with Scottish FA staff to attain the award.

The SBJFA are the first association in Scotland to take such a proactive step.

Gary Fraser, chairman of the association, said: “Quality Mark is a great programme of club development that ensures  our clubs have minimum operating standards, well qualified coaches, and an environment that is conducive for the development of young players.

"In the Scottish Borders, we are well supported by our Scottish FA football development officers, Dougie Anderson and Drew Kelly who have already supported a number of clubs to achieve this award. Hopefully, other associations will follow our lead to ensure that football in Scotland is played in the best environment possible for years to come."

Dougie Anderson, Scottish FA football development officer  said: “Football in the Scottish Borders continues to develop at a fast rate and we how have 88 members teams and 18 member clubs in the SBJFA, as well as a thriving amateur league and a lot of East of Scotland clubs.

"Eleven clubs have already been accredited through Quality Mark and we are working with most of the other clubs to support them through the process and beyond. The step taken by the member clubs tonight is a real break through and continues to demonstrate the Borders as one of the most progressive areas in the country.”

For more information on the Quality Mark Accreditation scheme, follow the link on the right.