WATCH: Gleaner Arena is long-term commitment to Moray
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A COMMUNITY project to provide a top class sports facility for groups in Elgin and Moray was officially opened last weekend.
The Gleaner Arena boasts a full size astro pitch and two mini pitches at lesser Borough Briggs - available for any sport that can be played on grass.
Stephen Scott, of headline sponsor Gleaner Oils, said he was “very proud” to be associated with the project.
“It is a fantastic facility for Elgin and the whole of Moray. I can remember playing football here back in the 70s.
“Dave (Allen) really took the bull by the horns and what has been created here is fantastic. I wish my father was here to see it. The element of giving back to the community is very important to us as a business.”
Gleaner have made a 10 year investment to the project - with an option to renew - backed up by a range of other supporters and sponsors.
Dave Allen has been the driving force , pulling together a group of trustees and sponsors to deliver the facility.
Dave said: “What we have here is a community coming together and showing what we are all about as Moray. This really is about community helping community.
“We want to go from strength to strength and we want to encourage other people to get involved. We will always raise funds for this and other projects.”
The project was first conceived at the end of 2016 and it took a year to become a registered charity.
“Then we spend years trying to get the commuunity asset transfer in place. It really started coming together when Volker Fitzpartick came on board and it really started generating the momentum.
“We also couldn’t have done this without Cllr John Cowe, he was the voice who got us enough support within the council to get the community asset transfer through.
“The important thing is demonstrating that it is not just football, any sport you play on grass you can play here. We have girls' netball, tennis, walking rugby and football."