Forres Community Football Trust are delighted to share the Feasibility Study for all-weather year-round outdoor football and sports facilities for Forres and our neighbouring communities.
The report was undertaken by Integratis Consulting and funded through a generous grant from Earnhill Trust.
Forres Community Football Trust (FCFT) are a newly established community led organisation that became a registered Scottish Charity in March 2021.
FCFT charitable objects are: The advancement of public participation in sport and the provision of recreational facilities and, or the organisation of recreational activities, with the objective of improving health and wellbeing and conditions of life for the persons for whom the facilities or activities are primarily intended.
FCFT project objectives are to establish an “all-weather sports surface” within the town of Forres which includes a fully enclosed full sized floodlit artificial (3g) surface.
Currently there is a gap in terms of existing 3G pitch provision across Moray in so far as Forres is the only community that does not have 3G pitch provision.
The provision of 3G pitch facilities in Forres will support the delivery of a number of key national and local strategies and help to enable priority outcomes to be delivered at a local level.
New 3G pitch facilities in Forres, if located centrally, would form part of a community hub for sport, fitness, health and wellbeing and be a valuable local resource that individuals, families, schools, clubs and communities can utilise in order to have improved health outcomes.
Applegrove or Roysvale present the most favourable options in terms of where a new 3G pitch facility should be developed
The main football teams and clubs in Forres experience difficulties in accessing suitable facilities for training and matchplay purposes. This can be due to a lack of facilities and also the poor condition of existing pitches.
There are no existing outdoor facilities or Synthetic Turf Pitches (STPs) that are floodlit in the Forres area which makes access to training and matchplay facilities difficult during the winter months.
All schools within the Forres cluster have indicated very strong support for the project and have said that many will use it on a daily basis, particularly Forres Academy, Applegrove, Pilmuir and Anderson’s Primary Schools. This would ensure a high level of daytime utilisation and reduce the time and costs for schools having to travel outwith the Forres area (This is based on current school locations)..
Core demand for the new facility has been established through the consultation process as being high. The addition of some usage from non-core demand would deliver very high levels of utilisation and ensure the new facilities were being well used and having a significant impact on local individuals, families and communities.
Consultation with local clubs, schools and stakeholders indicate that there is sufficient demand to sustain 3G pitch facilities in Forres.
Based on forecasted income and expenditure levels, the project should be financially sustainable across the life of the asset.
Outline capital costs show that the main 3G pitch could be developed at a cost of circa £687,750 for a both football and rugby compliant pitch, 106 x 66m, subject to exclusions.
Outline capital costs show that a 245m² changing pavilion could be developed at a cost of circa £690,000, subject to exclusions. However, income and expenditure forecasts exclude any income or operating costs associated with new changing pavilion accommodation as both preferred locations for the development at either Roysvale Park or Applegrove Playing Field already have access to community changing accommodation in the existing pavilion at Roysvale Parkand potentially Forres Swimming Pool
Outline capital costs show that a smaller covered multi activity games area, 36m x 18m could be developed at a cost of circa £374,692, subject to exclusions.
Accessing capital funding for the project is likely to be challenging however, Moray Council have already allocated £700k towards the cost of the project within the Capital Plan and there are a number of additional funding sources that should be explored to raise additional funds.
Based on discussion with Key stakeholders, the most realistic governance model for this project would be:
The Council would take on the day to day management and operation of Forres 3G facilities on completion of the pitch developments and be responsible for programming, booking, payments, ongoing maintenance and the costs of carpet replacement. Moray Council would then create a Management agreement with Forres Community Football Trust to determine priority access to the new 3G facilities outwith school hours to manage access for local Forres Teams and Clubs. Priority Access would be agreed in the long term but reviewed 6 monthly to ensure best use of the facilities are being made.
This governance model ensures that FCFT, which is a community led organisation, can focus on the activities and services that make a difference to the community, creating opportunities for individuals, families and communities in the Forres area to participate in sport, physical activity, improving health and wellbeing and applying for funding sources that are not available to Moray Council.