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Ross Sutherland Clubhouse will not be completed this year

By Andrew Henderson

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Ross Sutherland’s new clubhouse will definitely not be ready for the start of the 2020/21 season.

Ross Sutherland Rugby Club.
Ross Sutherland Rugby Club.

Although in theory the campaign’s start getting pushed back to the end of October gave the club more time to get it completed, production difficulties during the pandemic mean that the timescale for completion has been pushed back until next year.

Work has been ongoing on the Stags’ base in Invergordon for over a year at this stage, with the original opening hoped to take place over the summer.

That obviously was not possible, and now club president John Scott has confirmed that it will be into the early stages of 2021 before the final touches are in place for the new facility at the Naval Grounds.

“We’ve had a few issues with materials which has delayed things a little bit,” Scott said.

“We’ve got a good dialogue going with funders and we would hope to finish the clubhouse around February realistically now.

“It just depends on Covid and what other spanners that may be put in the works.

“There will be ongoing fundraising to finish off the last few bits and pieces still to be done.

“We have various different initiatives in the pipeline that we want to get sorted out in the next few months.

“That will help us bring in a bit more money as the project comes to a close to make sure we have what we need to finish it off.”

Even if the clubhouse had been ready for next season, which the Stags are due to begin at home against Moray on Saturday, October 31, it was unlikely that supporters would have been able to take advantage anyway.

The Stags are set for seven home matches next season.

If the February projection comes true though, the club will have just two games to make the most of the facility.

Aberdeen Grammar 2nds are due to visit Invergordon on Saturday, February 27, while Ross Sutherland’s last match of the season is due to be at home against Lossiemouth on Saturday, March 13 – although if the season is delayed further stand-by dates through to May can be used.

That was not lost on Scott, who does not think the side will miss out on too much backing from the sidelines.

“What is a home game going to look like now?” he said.

“It won’t be quite the social aspect that it once was. It may take some time to return to that, but we’re just working away.

“The committee are working hard to ensure the club carries on in a new format.”

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