Commonwealth Games and Sport minister Shona Robison has praised the work carried out by Borders Sport & Leisure (BSL) throughout the region.
On a visit to the Borders on Monday, Ms Robison witnessed first hand the way the local body approaches working in partnership with others to encourage active lifestyles and sporting excellence.
“The Commonwealth Games will be Scotland’s biggest ever sporting and cultural event and I want to see a Games legacy across the length and breadth of Scotland,” she said.
“I have today seen the practical and imaginative ways that school children and the community are getting involved.
“It’s this enthusiasm that will ensure a lasting legacy for the Commonwealth Games in the Scottish Borders.
“It been good to see how Borders Leisure have embraced the Games to bring the local community together in the spirit of the Commonwealth.”
The minister commenced her visit at the recently-refurbished Tweedbank Sports Centre, home to the Borders’ first Community Sport Hub, designed to enable clubs and organisations to join together to achieve more, whilst also increasing the number of people participating in sport and physical activity within local communities. The minister also met with children and adults who showcased a number of the sports available at the centre, including bowling, hockey and athletics.
Ms Robison then visited BSL’s new office in Galashiels which has enabled all of the organisation’s staff to work from one location. She finished her tour at the 3G Arena where young people involved in the first Borders’ School of Football and BASE rugby initiatives showcased their sports.
Ewan Jackson, chief executive of BSL, said: “We were delighted to welcome the Minister to the Scottish Borders and to demonstrate some of the ways we are working together to promote participation in activities and develop sporting ability.”
David Ferguson, BSL chairman, added: “This is an incredible year for sport and the eyes of the world will be upon our country throughout 2014 and especially during the Commonwealth Games. The minister’s visit provided us with the opportunity to show some of the work taking place here to bring more people into sport and to create a sporting legacy in the Borders.”
Borders Sport & Leisure, a charitable trust, took on responsibility for many of the region’s leisure centres and sports programmes from SBC 10 years ago.