Three of east Perthshire’s biggest sports clubs have banded together to ask the council to build a state-of-the-art 3G training pitch.
Blairgowrie and Rattray Community Football Club (BRCFC), Blairgowrie Hockey Club and Blairgowrie Rugby have all written to the local authority to ask if they will put a slice of the £17.7 million budget for the town’s new recreation centre towards the cost of the pitch.
It’s been confirmed that a 2G synthetic pitch will be part of the proposals for the overall development at Beeches Road. The project will be funded by Perth and Kinross Council’s education budget.
The plea for two sports pitches in Blairgowrie has the backing of Blairgowrie High School and Active Schools along with representatives from the national governing bodies of football and hockey.
Sandy Thomson, chair of BRCFC, said: “For at least five years, we have been in pursuit of a floodlit 3G pitch in the town to replace the floodlit all-weather surface that was removed some six or seven years ago from Davie Park, Rattray, Blairgowrie.
“Once the news broke that a new recreation centre was to be built in the town, the club lobbied for a 3G surface to be installed on the new site.”
He continued: “Blairgowrie and Rattray represent the largest town outside Perth in Perth and Kinross and currently there is no fit-for-purpose synthetic pitch provision for football or hockey within the area.
“This is restricting the playing, training and growth of these sports in our town and the wider eastern Perthshire communities.
“Through the consultation process for the new centre, as a group of volunteers in our respective sports, we have come together to plan the most appropriate way forward to maximise the growth potential of these sports alongside satisfying a recognised school need for a 2G type surface rather than a 3G one.
“If we were to have a 2G surface included at the recreation centre and a half size 65 x 55m floodlit 3G training area at Davie Park, it would enable growth in all areas and in all sports.
“We believe through this dual-site situation this is the only way we can support and develop our community to its fullest potential.”
And Susan Whiteford, Blairgowrie Hockey Club coach, said the organisation is delighted with the proposals for a new astroturf pitch in Blairgowrie.
Fraser Bissett, president of Blairgowrie Rugby Club, said it was “good to be working” with the football club and hockey club on getting the “best facilities for the town”.
A council spokesperson confirmed they had received the letter from the sports clubs asking for 3G provision.
“All comments received during the consultation will be taken into consideration,” she said.