Elgin City are preparing to host 220 supporters for Saturday’s League Two match against Cowdenbeath after receiving the green light from Moray Council.
The Black and Whites have been working on plans for supporters to return to Borough Briggs since the region was placed into Tier One of Scottish Government coronavirus restrictions last month.
Having had their proposals approved by the local council yesterday, Elgin are now awaiting confirmation from Scottish football’s joint response group ahead of Saturday’s visit of the Blue Brazil.
Elgin chairman Graham Tatters says the restricted capacity will limit the financial benefit, however, he is intent on providing a safe pathway for supporters to return to matches.
Tatters said: “We had to make a decision over whether to do it at all, we did contemplate not doing it.
“Notwithstanding the fact we are not going to make a lot of money on it, we wanted to get the message out there that people should be rewarded for paying their season tickets ahead when they didn’t even know if they would get the chance to get into a stadium.
“The 220 covers all the season ticket holders, so financially it’s not going to be great, but that’s irrelevant. It’s the positivity of getting fans in to watch us, which gives the whole club and community a boost.
“It’s a step in the right direction and we have home games against Cowdenbeath and Annan to look forward to.”
Tatters revealed he took advice from Ross County chief executive Steven Ferguson, with the Staggies having already staged three matches in front of 300 fans at Victoria Park this season.
Tatters added: “We spoke to Steven Ferguson, who went through all his procedures. He came down early to sit with us for about an hour and go through how they had dealt with things and he was tremendous.
“The protocols are nearly all the same, but the difference is Ross County have got seats, which is easier to identify where people will sit.
“We have had to mark out two metre spots on the concrete, we have been working out a procedure for entrance and exit and making sure we have enough stewards.
“We have had to bring in a couple of toilets as well, because the new toilets we built this season are in the red zone for the away team.
“It has been a lot of work. We just have to make sure everything is safe, because if there was to be a spike in Elgin and half the people came to the game, we would be really concerned about that.
“We think we have done it as safely as possible.”
Meanwhile, Elgin goalkeeper Thomas McHale has signed a new long-term deal which will keep him at Borough Briggs until 2023.