Council decision could close Fife football club pavilion

© DC Thomson
The Pavilion.

A Fife football club is to learn whether its new £750,000 community hub could be forced to close over safety fears.

Glenrothes Strollers is calling on town councillors to award the club £15,000 to build a fire hydrant when they meet at Fife House on Wednesday.

The club’s sports pavilion, which opened in March, has been operating under a temporary occupancy agreement with the local authority, an arrangement that is due to expire this month.

However, the council has warned that no extensions will be granted unless a purpose-built fire hydrant is installed, plunging the future of the building into doubt.

Ahead of the decision, the club has issued a statement confirming that its previous plan to share a hydrant with the nearby Michael Woods Leisure Centre had failed to materialise.

“Inevitably there were design and services assumptions within the project and unfortunately the opportunity to share a fire hydrant with Fife Council was an assumption the design lead had quite rightly considered was feasible.

“With the benefit of hindsight it is now recognised that the potential risk of not being able to share a fire hydrant had not been given sufficient attention and the building had been completed before this issue became apparent to us as the client.

“As a result, this oversight has left the club with a small funding gap to ensure a final completion of the build project.”

Councillors had originally been asked to approve £18,000 worth of funding for construction of the hydrant, however, the club has undertaken efforts that has seen this gap reduced to £15,000, with the total cost of the project estimated at £27,000.

Local members had reacted with disbelief when made aware of the situation in August, concerned about the apparent oversight in the planning process, despite Fife Council awarding £350,000 towards the cost of the project.

The hub had been hailed as a game-changer for
footballers in the town, hosting changing facilities, showers and a community cafe for the estimated 500 footballers playing under the
Glenrothes Strollers umbrella.

Paul Vaughan, the council’s head of community and neighbourhoods team, said: “Approval of the sum requested would allow the project to be completed and secure the permanent occupancy licence required by Fife Council.”