Community Hub

Coming Soon

In the Community, for the Community.

'A catalyst to inspire participation'

Our exciting new Community Hub project – ICT Community Trust’s primary objective is to promote and improve the physical and mental health of both young and old through activity.  For the past 19 years we have been successfully delivering this through the provision of after-school and summer football clubs for girls and boys, para football, walking football and football memories sessions, however our plans for extending delivery are constrained by the lack of outdoor facilities and teaching space.  We have been working with The Highland Council and Inverness Royal Academy for the past 18 months on an ambitious project to bring the playing fields adjacent to the school back into useable condition and to build new office facilities and changing rooms.   

The overall project will renovate the grass area adjacent to Inverness Royal Academy, for which we have been awarded a 25 year lease, putting in a new comprehensive drainage system in the whole field to enable the whole area to be usable once more.  The grass area, which measures just under 10 acres (8 acres with potential for sports pitches), is largely unusable due to historic flooding.  Inverness has a chronic lack of facilities of this kind (and in this location) and this area is big enough to house 4 full size pitches allowing a wide section of the community to access a grass football and athletics areas. The project also aims to restore the toilet facilities and add a new modular building on the site that would host changing rooms and offices.  The addition of a teaching space would allow maximum usage of the site ensuring it continues to be accessible to the proposed user groups long after the initial work and investment is completed, providing much-needed, longer-term facilities for local communities. 

 

If you would like to learn more about sponsorship opportunities associated with our new Hub, please contact us at craig.masterton@icttrust.org.uk

"Our project is unique in the local area and will be able to provide a wide range of benefits in one place where we can provide maximum impact for the area and make a lasting impact in the community we serve using football as the catalyst to inspire participation in activities both football and non-football related."

Craig Masterton, Trust Manager

Community Hub Update – February 2024

The most ambitious project undertaken by the ICT Community Development Team is the proposed creation of a community sporting hub at Inverness Royal Academy Playing Fields.

 

We have been granted a 25-year lease of the 10-acre grassed site near Rollerbowl and Inverness Gaelic Primary and in the first phase of redevelopment we have attracted funding of £183,000 to carry out major drainage and groundworks to remove flooding which has significantly reduced its use in recent years.

 

Recently, we lodged a planning application with The Highland Council seeking permission to proceed with phase two of the project. Estimated to cost a further £750,000, the second phase would see toilets upgraded and new office and changing rooms provided.  It is intended that my Community Development Team, who will manage the facility, will be based on-site moving from our current base at Caledonian Stadium.

 

At the hub, our Team will expect to welcome 1,200 participants per month to attend activities and host monthly football festivals for more than 500 primary school aged players.  It will also host the Highland "para" football team, now under the umbrella of ICT Trust; and adult programmes, including walking football for over 55s and Football Fans in Training.

 

The facility will also feature a seasonal grass athletics running track, long jump, shot putt and javelin area for use by Inverness Royal Academy pupils.

 

From the base, the team will support the ICT Football Memories Project and the Kick Off Your Career initiative. Breakfast and after-school clubs will support working parents at targeted schools.

 

There is also a commitment to support ICT FC Women and Girls section, who have 170 registered girls and women to play on a grass pitch.

 

Two additional staff will be employed to support the upkeep of the facility and work experience/vocational training in football coaching and grounds maintenance will be provided.

 

The project recognises the chronic lack of facilities in the city, with limited grass pitches available for use. Delivery will enable us to provide a wide range of benefits in one place and make a lasting difference in the community we serve, using football as the catalyst to inspire participation in activities both football and non-football related. 

 

The site is big enough to house 4 full-size pitches opening up opportunities for a wide section of the community to access grass football and athletics areas. 

 

We have established a strong partnership with the Scottish Football Association through delivery of local community projects, such as the primary school soccer festivals on a Saturday, provided in partnership with McDonalds and the Extra Time Initiative to provide breakfast and after-school clubs in three targeted schools in Inverness, namely Bishop Eden’s Primary, Dalneigh Primary and Merkinch Primary. 

 

The SFA have supported the first phase of the project with funding of £157,000 and we are hopeful they will also support our second phase.  Sport Scotland have also committed £100,000 to the second phase.

 

We are busy identifying other sources of funding to ensure we can realise our goal of providing our city with a first class community asset.

 

Craig Masterton, Community Development Manager, ICT Community Trust

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