Major Funding Boost Brings Rugby Clubs Into The 21St Century

Falkirk and Dumfries rugby clubs have been given a combined total of over a third of a million pounds by sportscotland to help create state of the art facilities. Falkirk will use the money awarded through the sportscotland Lottery fund to turn two disused blaes pitches into top class rugby pitches.Falkirk and Dumfries rugby clubs have been given a combined total of over a third of a million pounds by sportscotland to help create state of the art facilities.

Falkirk will use the money awarded through the sportscotland Lottery fund to turn two disused blaes pitches into top class rugby pitches.

As well as the new grass pitches, Falkirk will also build a state of the art floodlit 3G synthetic pitch that they can use for training.

The news comes as a major boon for Falkirk, who were crowned champions for a record breaking fifth season in a row this year.

Already the club have been rewarded for their hard work with the Scottish Hydro Electric Club of the Season and a parliamentary commendation from constituency MSP, Michael Matheson.

Falkirk club President, Alex McQuade, said: "We're all absolutely delighted. Over the last few years our facilities have deteriorated, this investment and the development that it allows will bring us up to speed with the progress that is happening on the field".

Not to be out done, Dumfries Saints have also been given a substantial six figure sum for the development of their changing facilities.

The success at Park Farm has a certain similarity to that at Falkirk, as they received the Scottish Hydro Electric Club of the Year for 2006/07 and have also been promoted for the fifth season in a row.

The Saints will now enter into Scottish Hydro Electric National League One next season, just as Falkirk leave for the Premier Leagues.

Dumfries, with the help of Scottish Rugby who have donated specialist gym equipment, will transform a couple of the old changing rooms into a small conditioning suite, which will be used as a centre of excellence for rugby players in the Dumfries and Galloway region.

The Saints also plan to update their changing and shower facilities by putting in individual shower cubicals for young players, girls and women in an effort to make the club more approachable for people who find the open showers unappealing.

Dumfries club President, John Miller, said: _x001C_This is an exciting time at the club as the clubhouse was last developed in 1983 and the changing rooms in the 1970s.

_x001C_The development will bring the club right up to the 21st Century. We'll have facilities to be proud of and that's important to attract young players to the club_x001D_.

Scottish Rugby's Head of Community rugby Colin Thompson said: _x001C_Scottish Rugby, with their involvement in bids such as this, is working to improve rugby provisions nationwide so that everyone can benefit from top class facilities.

_x001C_It is always good to see clubs helping themselves and developing where they can. The clubs' plans highlight their commitment to rugby and to the strengthening of the grass roots game_x001D_.

Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland, said: _x001C_sportscotland is delighted to provide this investment in both Falkirk and Dumfries rugby clubs with awards of £200,000 and £140,835 respectively from sportscotland's Building for Sport programme.

_x001C_Both these clubs are committed to the development of rugby locally and the new facilities will benefit players at all levels, strengthening both clubs, enabling the further development of their memberships and ensuring players have the opportunity to develop their skills and reach their full potential. sportscotland is committed to providing quality, accessible facilities for communities across Scotland and when built, the new facilities will hopefully attract more young people into the game and see both clubs continue to thrive.