Multimillion-pound sports centre opened to public for first time

Councillors John Cox and Michael Roy

A multimillion-pound sports centre has opened in the north-east.

The Deveron Community and Sports Centre is part of Aberdeenshire Council’s £12.5million commitment to improving community facilities in Banff and Macduff.

The centre, at Banff Academy, includes a climbing wall, sports hall and two squash courts.

The development also features a floodlit all-weather pitch, three tennis courts, a cycle track and a 400-metre running track.

Local sports groups exhibited their skills on Saturday when it was opened to local residents for the first time.

Councillor Michael Roy said the new complex was a facility the whole community could be proud of.

“It was with a sense of pride and satisfaction that I attended the soft opening of the Deveron Sports centre at the Banff Academy Campus on Saturday,” he said last night.

Deveron Community Sports
Deveron Community Sports
Deveron Community Sports
Deveron Community Sports

Mr Roy said that he was pleased the long-running dispute between supermarket giant Tesco and Aberdeenshire Council over land and developer contributions in the towns of Banff and Macduff had come to a positive conclusion.

He added: “The magnificent state-of-the-art sport and leisure facilities at Banff and Macduff, along with the upgrading of Macduff Arts Centre, will be an inspiration for future generations.

“They will also contribute to the regeneration of the two towns.”

Fellow Banff councillor John Cox, chairman of the local area committee, has described the centre as “first class”.

“The opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to take part in sports and build their skills through community learning and development at this centre are second-to-none and it really complements the new Macduff Community and Sports Centre which opened at the end of last year.”

The £3.5million complex in neighbouring Macduff was opened in November and also includes an all-weather pitch.

The two towns nearly missed out on new facilities when Tesco pulled out of a deal to develop a park in the Myrus area in 2015.

The retailer had planned to part-fund a replacement for Canal Park – where it had intended to build a store – before abandoning plans.