Villa Park has been the starting point for a number of footballers who have gone to succeed in the professional ranks.
But the ground, which sits close by the River Spey in Aberlour, has seen better days, and Aberlour Villa now hope to replace their “eyesore” pavilion in time to see in their centenary celebrations.
Now the Moray and District Welfare League outfit’s 50-year-old pavilion is in need of a major upgrade after years of repair work to ensure it was kept wind and water tight.
Not only that, those running the club are also aware their deteriorating home makes a poor impression with the many visitors the town and surrounding area attract.
The committee are hoping to replace the building before kicking-off celebrations in 2024 to mark 100 years since Fred Stewart, ‘Chattie’ Calder, ‘Winkie’ Milton, Harvey Annan and Ronald McGovan set up the club.
New pavilion would be “good” for Aberlour Villa
Chairman Jake Gordon is spearheading major efforts to make the creation of a new pavilion a reality.
He explained: “It would be really good for the football club to have a new pavilion.
“I have been in the committee since 2014 and it has been a thing we have been trying every year but we just did work needed to ensure the pavilion survived.
“We would really love to have a new pavilion for our centenary year to kick off celebrations and so far have looked at a couple of options such as a portal cabin.”
New facilities could include showers
The club has produced many players who have gone on to play at a higher level including Scotland capped goalie Nicky Walker who starred for the likes of Leicester, Rangers, Partick Thistle, Hearts and Aberdeen.
And Mr Gordon is hoping the club will continue to be a proving ground for players of the future – amidst new and improved surroundings.
He hopes the community will play their part by becoming involved in a fundraising effort.
“It will take a lot of hard work to get this all together but the committee members are all singing off the same hymn sheet,” he said.
“We are wanting to get showers in the pavilion as we are probably the only club in the welfare set-up, apart from Tomintoul, without them.
“It is important that it is a nice building as currently it is a eyesore for people walking along the Speyside Way and those travelling on the main road to Grantown.
“We will speak to the close-knit Aberlour community to see if they can provide any support.”
To donate to the cause, people can visit www.gofundme.com/f/aberlour-villa-football-club-new-pavilion