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Monday, 13 July 2020 10:47

Cambusdoon Find the Light During Lockdown

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Despite the coronavirus pandemic ending their season early, Cambusdoon FC had reason to cheer after installing new floodlights at their sports centre.

The new additions mean that come the winter months, the Ayr-based club will be able to play long into the dark nights.

Sam Hornell, club president, told YFS: “Over the past four or five years, they have become very expensive as the floodlights were failing a lot just due to old age. We had to upgrade the pitch first, which we did in 2017 and the next thing was to move on and do the lights.

“It was actually going to be cheaper renewing the lights than what it was with the old ones and constantly repairing, and it was probably around 12 months ago when we actually agreed we would move ahead with that project.”

As the sports centre is right in the middle of town, the club’s president stated that the next plan for the sports centre would focus more on the social side.

“80% of our members come from the immediate location, around walking distance, so our next sort of aspect is probably going to be reviving the social side, enhancing what we provide to our adult members. 

“We encourage family members and a significant proportion of our membership is family based, so we will be looking at enhancing our social programme and the dining facility.”

After the social upgrades to the sports centre, Sam indicated he would like the sports centre to be a big part of the community.

His goal for Cambusdoon is to be “the place where it is used as the social hub of the local community and obviously the playing hub for football, cricket and bowling. 

“We would see football being completed - in the next three years we will add another age group meaning that will give us everything from under-5s to under-18s, [and] formation of a senior team. 

“It will be boys and girls, as I think the football club has plans for a senior ladies team as well.

“[After] getting those done and completed, we would like to see the bowling side of things attract more members and the cricket side keep on going, as they are in a regeneration mode at the moment, the rebuilding of membership phase and on the social side, really a place where people go for their Sunday lunch and enjoy themselves.”

Good luck to Cambusdoon for the coming season!

 

Kris Doolan is heading back to Auchinleck Talbot – the club that got him his big break in Scottish football – but this time, he won’t be lacing up his own boots.

 

Instead, he’ll be teaching youngsters how to find the back of the net as he launches the Kris Doolan Football Academy, in partnership with the Beechwood Park side.

 

“Auchinleck Talbot Youth Academy were keen to get involved,” Kris told YFS in an exclusive interview. “

 

“I think professional players have a lot to offer to youngers players. I thought, how can I use everything I’ve learned in football and all the contacts I have in the game to try and raise the profile of teams and players?”

 

“We set up so we can help younger players by using good professionals with a lot of experience at the top level of Scottish football because sometimes they need that guidance and there is nothing better than having a professional player take your session and giving you advice.”

 

Auchinleck Talbot have been the giants of non-league football for decades and have always been known for producing a high calibre of promising players. The club’s academy announced on June 27 that they would be hoping to further players development with a newly established partnership with the Kris’ new academy.

 

A statement on the club’s academy social media pages said: “We are delighted to announce that ATFC Youth Academy & Kris Doolan Football Academy have entered into a working partnership”.

 

Kris started his career in non-league football with Kello Rovers, before moving to his hometown team, Auchinleck Talbot. He spent one season there before joining professional club Partick Thistle, where he became the club’s record goal scorer with over 100 goals.

 

“This is a very exciting partnership for our youth academy, as Kris and his team will offer expert help and support to our youth coaches and youth players,” the club statement concluded.

 

The Kris Doolan Football Academy offers one-to-one, entire team and specialised positional sessions that are coached by Kris himself and other pros. These sessions are carried out with clubs at grassroots level all the way up to professional level.

 

The Partick Thistle legend explained to YFS his thoughts behind setting up his own academy.

 

“What we don’t want to see is players falling out academies at 20 years-old, hating football because they’ve been released by clubs. We would come in and give them guidance and try link them up with clubs.”

 

Kris, who played for Ayr United and Greenock Morton last season, plans to have his coaching sessions with Talbot up and running (within Government Covid-19 guidelines in place) as soon as the club are given permission by the West of Scotland Football League to train again.

 

 “I grew up in Auchinleck and I was at Talbot for a year before I went to Partick Thistle, so it’s my hometown and I want to help.

 

“If it means we are overseeing things at the Auchinleck Academy and one player gets into the Talbot first team, that’s a success for us and the coaches at Auchinleck”.

 

“I’m really excited and so are Talbot because Auchinleck is a very well-established club and we want to progress that even more; I want everyone to be proud of Auchinleck Talbot Youth Academy.”

 

The step-up from non-league football to senior football is a big point in any young players career and some players can’t adapt to the difference in quality and environment senior football brings. 

 

As someone who has played consistently at both levels Kris shared his advice on how to adapt a young player.

 

“There’s a big gap from junior to senior football but if you do things in the right manner and you’ve got good habits that gap can be overcome by doing certain things and I want the kids to know this along with the pitfalls at a very young age.”

 

“I always say the best players are the best learners.”

 

Beith Juniors have won the ‘Donate A Ticket’ Scottish Cup, after a dramatic final against fellow Scottish Junior side Tranent Juniors. The club won the tie with a total of 969 £5 ticket donations, with both clubs raising a total of £9,170.

YFS’ Matthew Muir spoke to Club Secretary, Chris Irving, who expressed delight at the club’s achievement and at how much money was raised throughout the competition – some of which will help with the sides venture into the new Lowland Development League.

“It was fantastic last night when with just a few minutes to go we were ahead by over 100 tickets and realised we had won it. The tie really went to the wire. In terms of the money raised, it has been absolutely overwhelming and way beyond any expectations we had.”

The ‘Mighty’ faced many clubs on their way to the final, going up against Sauchie, Cambuslang Rangers and Newtongrange Star in the semi-final but the highlight of the cup came when they drew SPFL side Raith Rovers.

Chris said: “Beating Raith Rovers in the quarter-finals was probably the highlight for us given their high profile in Scottish football – they were the highest ranked club in the competition and come with a huge fanbase.”

‘Donate A Ticket’ is a football fundraising platform founded to help football clubs across the UK & Ireland raise money in the form of a match ticket.

Chris explained: “We heard about the campaign after we had seen other clubs posting on social media regarding getting involved. At that point, the concept of the ‘Donate A Ticket’ Scottish Cup hadn’t even come about so we had zero expectations of how much we could raise.

“Initially, we had been posting on social media for supporters to buy tickets for our cancelled games and even when the Scottish Cup campaign was put to us by Ruaridh Kilgour at ‘Donate A Ticket’ we were initially unsure as everyone is going through difficult times and we were uncertain about asking for even more tickets for what was originally to be a weekly competition.”

Chris continued: “Like every club at the moment, times are tough with no real income coming in.

“We have had no games since early March and given the current financial uncertainty that many businesses are facing, asking for sponsorship is also difficult and something we have held back on.

The money coming in will be a massive help to see us through the coming season once and may even help towards future renovation works at Bellsdale Park.

“We have also joined the West of Scotland Football League (WoSFL) and in order to progress beyond that, should we be successful on the pitch, we would install floodlights as we do not have any, therefore unexpected boosts like the ‘Donate A Ticket’ campaign will allow the club to start thinking ahead”.

“We have also brought in a new u20s side which will play in the Lowlands Development League and will be managed by Chris Wilson. We look forward to working with Chris and his team and seeing the boys in action once football resumes.”

Chris also gave us an insight into the business happening at the Ayrshire club as they look forward towards the launch of the 2020/21 season.

“We have managed to complete our new Changing Room facility recently with some hard work from volunteers as well as carrying on with the yearly maintenance of the pitch and the terracing areas. We have also taken part in SFA Webinars in order to start preparing Bellsdale Park for the club’s return.

“In terms of the playing side, we have seen eight players leave, with some club legends amongst them, but manager Bryan Young has brought in eight new players as we enter into what is a new era both on and off the park.

Chris concluded with a message for the fans, thanking them for their ongoing support for the club.

“We have been completely taken aback by the response we have had, even prior to the Scottish Cup campaign.

“Our fans are crucial to us and the ‘all in it together’ mentality we are trying hard to create at the club has really came to the fore over the last few weeks.

“We just want our fans to know that without them we are nothing, and that hopefully together we can have more good times on the pitch going forward into what is a new era for the Club.”

To follow Beith Juniors and find out more about the club, follow their Twitter page @BeithJuniorsFC and to find out more about ‘Donate A Ticket’, go to their website at donateaticket.com

Crosshouse BC vs Bonnyton Thistle U13

In the crowded U13’s League of the West of Scotland Youth Leagues, games to watch are quite difficult to come across. Thankfully, we have a match with proper title ramifications to look at this weekend.

Crosshouse currently sit in second place, just two points off of league leaders Cumnock Juniors. Failure to win this weekend could result in Crosshouse falling further behind as it is expected that Cumnock will beat their opponents Dreghorn Stars this weekend.

Bonnyton Thistle have some room to maneuver, but any dropped points here could prove costly come the end of the season. Thistle sit fourth, nine points behind Juniors with three games in hand over the leaders.

Bonnyton remain undefeated this season, with a 100% record to maintain, while Crosshouse have only lost one game all season at Cumnock Juniors. 


Glenburn MW vs Auchinleck Talbot U14

These two have a lot of work to do to catch up with runaway leaders Tass Thistle, so a win this weekend is extremely important to both teams.

Glenburn have the most ground to make up. They currently find themselves nine points adrift of Tass having played the same number of games and with Thistle looking likely to win their game against bottom side Hurlford United, dropped points would surely have a massive impact on their title ambitions.

Auchinleck Talbot occupy second place and also have to make up nine points on the league leaders, but have the benefit of holding two games in hand. Wins in those spare games could put more pressure on Tass, but only if they manage to get the job done this weekend.

There is still plenty of life left in the B League. Keep your eyes peeled.


Crosshouse BC vs KSC Kilwinning Rangers Blue U16

You won’t find many more compelling title races across the country than the race for the WOSYFL Under 16’s League. Just four points separate the top five from each other, and two of those teams face off this weekend.

Crosshouse share top spot with Caledonian and have two games in hand over their rivals. They also remain unbeaten in the league this season, keeping up the pressure on those around them.

Kilwinning Rangers sit three points behind them, also holding two games in hand over Caledonian at the top, having lost just one game in the league to fellow contenders Tass Thistle. 

This will be the first time the two have met each other in league competition, making this an extremely hard one to call. The benefit for the neutral is that it has all the ingredients to be one of the ties of the week around the country. This writer is keen to see how it all plays out.


Heston Rovers vs Lochar Thistle U14

Moving further south towards the Dumfries and Galloway leagues, the Bobby Kerr U14’s League is still very much up for grabs. Both teams hold one game in hand over first place and are neck and neck heading into their clash this weekend.

The two have yet to meet in the league, but a win for either would very much keep them in the title fight. Each of them have only lost two games each this season.

It is very rare that you see two teams with the exact same records face each other this late into the season, but that is exactly what we have in store this weekend. It will be interesting to see how the two approach this game.


Galloway Thistle vs Mid Annandale U16

The top two in the league face each other in the Bobby Kerr 16’s League this weekend in what is sure to be an entertaining match between two teams who will surely be motivated for the match.

Galloway Thistle occupy top spot going into the game and hold a three point advantage over their opponents this weekend. Thistle have only lost one game so far this season, a surprisingly convincing defeat at the hands of Annan Athletic.

Mid Annandale have played one game less than Galloway and a win would put them on exactly even footing with their opponents. Like Thistle, they have only lost one game this season, a narrow defeat to Lochar Thistle.

Expect a high quality match between two great sides.

Tuesday, 04 February 2020 09:03

South West Region Round Up - 1/2 February 2020

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U13s

Crosshouse BC took full advantage of their game in hand to close the gap on WOSYFL U13s league leaders Cumnock Juniors. A convincing 8-0 win away to Irvine Meadow AC saw them close the gap to just five points having played 13 games each.

Coylton remain winless at the bottom of the league having suffered a big defeat to a Valspar side pushing towards the top end of the league.

Cumnock Juniors were in cup action this weekend and booked their place in the semi-finals of the Presidents Cup with a 3-1 win over a motivated KSC Kilwinning Rangers side. Auchinleck Talbot, Drongan United and Troon Thistle were able to book their place in semi finals of the Charles Hoggitt Senior Memorial Cup with wins over Caledonian United, Dreghorn Stars and Irvine Meadow respectively.


U14s

Dreghorn Moorfield extended their lead at the top of the A League with a convincing 9-1 win over Nith Valley United. KCFC Blasties 1-1 draw with Bellfield Royals meant that Dreghorn were able to move seven points clear. Caledonian YFC were able to make up ground with a 7-2 win over Largs Colts.

In the big game in the B League, Tass Thistle were able to secure a massive win to extend their lead at the top to seven points. The 6-2 win over their nearest rivals Glenburn MW could prove vital in the title race this season.

At the other end of the table Woodwynd Wolves were able to pick up only their second win of the league season with a 2-1 win over Hurlford United.


U15s

Glenburn MW closed the gap at the top of the U15s League to five points as they secured a narrow victory over Kilwinning Rangers Whites. League leaders Crosshouse BC could only manage a draw against Galston YFC.

And at the bottom of the table Irvine Meadow secured their first league win of the season as they beat fellow strugglers Dean Thistle 3-0. Thistle are still without a win in the league this season.


U16s

Caledonian kept their lead at the top of the U16s league with a 6-0 win over Dean Colts.

Galston YFC’s 8-0 victory over KSC Kilwinning Rangers Whites kept them within three points of the league leaders. Leaders Caledonian have played one game more than their rivals.

Tass Thistle also closed the gap at the top to four points with their emphatic 9-1 win over Townhead United.


U17s

Rowallan used the opportunity of their nearest rivals, Glentyan Thistle, not playing to extend their lead at the top of the table to eight points. Their 8-2 win over Hurlford was emphatic and extended the lead having played one game more.

 

U19s

Irvine United’s win over Bonnyton Thistle extended their lead at the top of the U19s League to nine points. United have played two games more than most of their title rivals.

One of those rivals, Valspar FC moved to within nine points of United with a thrilling 4-3 win over KSC Kilwinning Rangers. With two games in hand over the leaders they are still very much in the title race.

Wednesday, 09 October 2019 21:41

Klopp gesture a dream come true for Galston's Kyle

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In May of this year, one young footballer was dealt a heartbreaking piece of news. Kyle Burns, a talented Galston YFC 2006 player with an eye for goal, was told that he may never walk again. After being rushed to A&E he was diagnosed with what’s known to the doctors as an fibrocartilaginous embolism. This caused a spinal blood clot, leading to spinal stroke, which then caused a tear in his spinal cord.
 
After being told he may never walk again, Kyle's attitude has been remarkable. He has worked incredibly hard to make small amounts of progress day by day, with a little help from the football family. Since the news broke, the spirit of the grassroots football community in Ayrshire and beyond has shown incredible generosity. Kyle's gofundme page (click here) set out to generate £1500 in donations, but has recently broken the £10,000 milestone.
 
The support hasn't just came in the form of money. Kyle's club mates at Galston 2005s dedicated their cup victory to him (click here); he was awarded a special trophy at the Crosshouse CFC tournament in August; and he was even visited in hospital by Ross McCrorie of Rangers.
 
However, this week Kyle received some special news. This evening the Galston 2006s Facebook page broke the news: "We had a special guest at training tonight! John Logan, uncle of our goalkeeper Cammy Stewart, came to present Kyle Burns with a special letter. John has been working down at Liverpool FC's new training complex and shared Kyle's story with manager Jürgen Klopp who was touched by Kyle's journey. The Pool boss decided to write a letter to invite Kyle down to meet him and the players at the Melwood training ground.
 
"Kyle is absolutely delighted to receive this invitation and we would like to thank John for the kind gesture! Kyle has came a long way in the past five months and continues to rarely miss a training session or game to support his team-mates and friends. He deserves this amazing opportunity to go down and visit the European Champions."
 
Everyone at YFS is delighted for Kyle and can't wait to hear about his day with the European champions.

The founder of Ayr-based football club Valspar FC, Jim Gourlay, received his well-deserved place on the Queen's honours list this year. Jim now joins the ranks of Scottish Football legends who have also received this accolade such as Ally Mcoist, Gordon Strachan, and Sir Alex Ferguson.

The club was founded in 1976 by Jim who had no prior experience, just a love for the game and a desire to give young men in his own town of Ayr an outlet and purpose.From 1976 to 2019  Valspar teams have travelled to countries as far and wide as Canada, America, Norway, Sweden and many others. In the early 1990s Jim took a team that won the Austria cup having previously won the Scottish cup.

Jim has spent his career as both chairman and president of the club, as well as scouting for teams like Liverpool and Ayr United. During his tenure at Liverpool Football Club, Jim was responsible for the scouting of 1988 FWA Player of the Year Steve Nicol. As well as this, he was involved in the early recruitment of John Barnes and Emile Heskey. 

Perhaps his biggest recent achievement was, whilst scouting for Ayr United, he spotted a young left sided player by the name of Andy Robertson, who you may remember lifting the Champions League trophy in June.   

Jim Gourlay’s recognition comes well earned, his role within Scottish Football has been pivotal for years and something for everyone with a passion for football to look up to. 

Congratulations Jim!

 
This Saturday sees the beginning of the WOSYFL Cup Finals and we are set to be treated to three close ties, containing six very good sides.
 
The first match this weekend will see Galston YFC and Dreghorn Moorfield face off at U13s level. Following this will be the U16s Presidents Cup final between Glenburn MW and Rowallan FC, before the day is rounded off with the U19s William Nesbitt Cup final between Bonnyton Thistle and Hurlford BC.
 
Let's now look at all the finals this Sunday:
 
 
Galston YFC vs Dreghorn Moorfield U13s - Charles Hogg Memorial Trophy Final
 
Both teams come into this game on good form. Galston currently sit 4th in the 25 team WOSYFL U13s League, having lost just two games in the league all season. And while one of those games did come against their final opponents, they will still certainly fancy their chances of leaving with the trophy.
 
Dreghorn have had an equally inpresive first season at 11-a-side football and they occupy second spot in the league table, having lost just one game this season. Moorfield also have the mental advantage in knowing that they have already beaten Galston earlier this season, winning 5-2 when the sides met back in November.
 
Here is how both teams made their way to Dam Park:
 
 
Galston YFC
 
Preliminary Round: KFA Inter - 10-1 (H)
1st Round: KFA Bayern - 10-0 (H)
Quarter-Final: Craigie Colts - 6-0 (A)
Semi-Final: Irvine Meadow - 2-1 (H)
 
 
Dreghorn Moorfield
 
Preliminary Round: Coylton FC - 10-0 (H)
1st Round: Troon Thistle - 10-0 (H)
Quarter-Final: Stewarton Annick - 8-1 (H)
Semi-Final: Caledonian YFC - 3-1 (A)
 
 
 
Glenburn MW vs Rowallan FC U16s - Presidents Cup Final
 
Glenburn's form in the WOSYFL U16s league this season has been pristine so far, with 14 wins from 14 games played this season in league action. On top of this they can boast a win over Rowallan so far already this season, although they will definitely be in for a more challenging test when they meet again on Saturday.
 
Rowallan have also performed well this season and have only picked up two losses in the league this season. One of those defeats did come at the hands of Glenburn, but since that match Rowallan have been on fine league form, with eight straight wins, conceeding just three goals in the process.
 
Here is how both teams made their way to Dam Park:
 
 
Glenburn MW
 
1st Round: Stewarton United - 10-1 (H)
Quarter-Final: Dalrymple Thislte - 4-3 AET (A)
Semi-Final: Bellfield Royals - 4-3 (A)
 
 
Rowallan FC
 
1st Round: BYE
Quarter-Final: Cunninghame Colts - 8-0 (A)
Semi-Final: Valspar AC - 6-1 (H)
 
 
 
Bonnyton Thistle vs Hurlford BC U19s - William Nesbitt Cup Final
 
Bonnyton come into this game as underdogs, but will take great encouragement from their run in this tournament so far. A win in the semi-finals against a strong Auchinleck Talbot side serves as evidence that Thistle are more than capable of taking any team on on their day.
 
Hurlford are having a great season so far and sit in a favourable position in the league to take top spot and win the title. The Scottish Cup Quarter-Finalists will have t make sure complacency doesn't become an issue, despite having already beaten Bonnyton earlier this season.
 
Here is how both teams made their way to Dam Park:
 
 
Bonnyton Thistle
 
1st Round: Bellfield BC - 6-1 (H)
Quarter-Final: Cumnock Juniors - 10-1 (H)
Semi-Final: Auchinleck Talbot - 3-1 (A)
 
 
Hurlford BC
 
1st Round: Glenafton - 1-0 (H)
Quarter-Final: Coylton - 8-0 (H)
Semi-Final: Irvine Meadow - 3-1 (H)
 
 
 
YFS is looking forward to filming all of these games this weekend. If you would like to pre-order your match DVD, order here @ https://yfs.news/FinalApril19
 
Cumnock Juniors youngster is set to walk 28 miles over four days to raise money for charity.
 
10 year old Lochlan Murdoch will walk around all 12 SPFL Premiership stadiums, as well as Hampden Park and Townhead Park in Cumnock, raising money for JDRF Scotland and The Kris Boyd Charity.
 
JDRF Scotland aims to develop research to help combat Type 1 Diabetes, which Lochlan was diagnosed with five and a half years ago and The Kris Boyd Charity, which offers support for mental health.
 
Lochlan unfortunately broke his leg during the Ayr International Tournament last year and has had to have two surgeries on his knee, which has stopped him from playing football.
 
He decided to challenge himself and get fit by organising this charity event.
 
On his GoFundMe page, he said: "When I broke my leg I got very sad and felt left out and really alone. I lost my confidence because I couldn't play football. I stopped going to watch training and games because I felt so sad at not being able to take part and play with my friends.
 
"So, I decided I wanted to challenge myself and get myself back to being fit and healthy and to reach a new goal. Football is my absolute favourite thing in the world and Kilmarnock FC are my favourite team.
 
"I train with Kilmarnock Development team too and when I am older I want to play professional football like Jamie MacDonald and Kris Boyd. I don't want type1 or being sad to stop me from achieving everything I want to achieve. Andy Rose (Motherwell FC) and Scott Allan(Celtic FC) have type 1 diabetes and it certainly doesn't stop them and they are such an inspiration to me."
 
Lochlan will begin his journey at Townhead Park on the 2nd April and will end at Ruby Park in Kilmarnock on the 6th April.
 
Anyone interested in helping Lochlan's cause can donate on his GoFundMe page by clicking the link here.
 
(Picture courtesy of SFP Trust)
 
Threave Rovers have officially announced the opening of their brand new playing facility at Birkland Road.
 
The facility comes as a result of an “asset transfer” with Dumfries and Galloway Council and will aim to provide the club and wider community with an arena which will continue the advancement of grassroots football in the area.
 
Threave Rovers originally contacted the Scottish Football Partnership Trust to discuss the project and the Trust were encouraged by the ambition of the project by Rovers.
 
Stuart McCaffrey, Chief Operating Officer at The Scottish Football Partnership said, “It is fantastic to see the transformation of Birkland Park into an excellent footballing facility for Threave Rovers Community F.C.
 
“The coaches and volunteers who have worked tirelessly over many months deserve an enormous amount of credit for making this project a reality. From the outset we were determined to play our part in improving the facilities available to the club and more specifically the 180 young players it has across 9 different age-groups including 2 girls’ teams.
 
“We hope our investment in this new football hub will allow the club to continue to develop and grow its playing membership and to increase participation in football locally.”
 
David McMath, Secretary of Threave Rovers said, “The club identified this facility as a must-have if it was to continue to provide excellent opportunities for individual players and teams to grow and develop. We have worked collaboratively with Dumfries and Galloway Council, the SFP and SP Energy Networks in particular in firstly securing and then the construction phase of this project.
 
"The rewards are now there to be seen in that we have created a safe and secure changing and playing environment which will bring long-term benefits to our club.
 
"On behalf of everyone at Threave Rovers Community F.C. and the local community, I would like to thank the following organisations; Dumfries and Galloway Council, The Scottish Football Partnership, SP Energy Networks, Roadbridge, John Jardine Plant, Maxwell Construction, Allan Smith Fencing, James Smith Fencing, SWEAT and The Holywood Trust for their support in making this project a reality as without such partnerships, it would not have been possible.
 
"This new facility is an excellent example of what can be achieved with community engagement. We hope this project can inspire other communities to also see the benefits of such a facility which can only enhance the future of football in Scotland.”
 
Iain Steele, Dumfries and Galloway District General Manager at SP Energy Networks said, "SP Energy Networks is proud to support Threave Rovers and support the construction of the club's new facilities.
 
"They will create a huge number of new opportunities for the club, the local community in Castle Douglas and visitors from further afield. As the owner and operator of power lines in the area, we are completely committed to supporting communities across Dumfries and Galloway.
 
"We're looking forward to seeing the club and players thrive as a result of the new football facilities."
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