Financial problems force the closure of Rothes FC Social Club
Easier access to your trusted, local news. Have a look at our digital subscription packages!
SERIOUS financial problems have forced the closure of a well-known and loved Rothes pub.
The Rothes FC Social Club – which has been separate from the town's football club for some time – closed for the final time this month.
An open meeting, attended by 28 people, was held at the social club on December 21 to inform locals of the reasons behind the closure.
The news was met with widespread sadness and disappointment from locals, but Steve Allan, who was brought in to assess the club's financial position, said it was "inevitable".
"Essentially, the club has been running on a shoestring budget for years, memberships were dwindling and there was a crippling rental agreement," he said.
"The place was run almost single-handedly by Rothes FC secretary Garry Davies and when he passed away a few months ago it couldn't cope.
"When I showed the accounts to the bank they said the only option was to close the pub.
"It was inevitable that it was going to close, and Covid probably hid that for a wee while longer."
Mr Allan described the closure as "the end of an era".
He added: "There were no members to speak of, but there will be a lot of sad people.
"It's the end of era as this was the first social club linked to a Highland League football club.
"Everybody has tried their hardest to keep the place open but time caught up with it and it fell from grace."
The Rothes FC Social Club opened in 1967 and was run by the football club but the two separated many years ago.
In recent times, the building itself has fallen into a poor state – with only tarpaulin currently protecting the kitchen area from the rain.
Numbers going through the door fell drastically, but the pub remained popular among younger Rothes FC supporters until it closed.