Jed-Forest out to try for £300,000 revamp

Jed-forest Rugby Club, Riverside Park.
Jed-forest Rugby Club, Riverside Park.

A Borders rugby team’s club room could be in line for a £300,000 makeover if funding applications and plans submitted this week are given the go-ahead.

Jed-Forest Rugby Club has lodged plans with Scottish Borders Council this week for a major extension and revamp of its Riverside Park main stand club rooms.

The proposals include upgrading the current bar, function suite and toilet facilities and creating new male and female changing rooms.

The club also hopes to create a new gym and alter the club rooms to include a second-storey viewing area with a disabled access lift.

Jed-Forest Rugby Club president Paul Cranston said: “We hope to bring the club rooms up to a standard that we are not going to have to worry about them for a good number of years.

“We are wanting to revamp the club rooms at a time when we are doing quite well and there is a good crop of young players coming up through the Jed Thistle ranks, but we’re not just doing this for rugby development – we are hoping it will benefit the whole community.

“The separate changing rooms for men and women and the disabled access will make a huge difference.

“It’s for the future generation really.”

Home of the friendly sevens, the facilities at Riverside Park also play host to the Jed Thistle rugby sevens, Jed mini-rugby training, Jedburgh Borders Games, school sports days and the annual Riverside Rock music festival.

The club has applied to the Scottish Rugby Union’s club sustainability fund, SportScotland and the Jedburgh common good fund to help pay for the proposed project, costed at between £300,000 and £350,000.

Money raised by Riverside Rock would also help meet the bill for the refurbishment.

Paul added: “We are also very fortunate that we are able to pay a sum of the money up ourselves through Riverside Rock, and that is the beauty of Riverside Rock. It is there to help specifically with the development of the club, not the everyday running of the club.

“We have been talking about this for a couple of years now on the executive committee, and it has been that committee which has driven this forward.

“The designs have been drawn up for a while, but a lot of the grant funding won’t be confirmed until the plans are submitted and approved.

“It’s not all going to happen at once.”

The council is expected to consider the plans in the coming weeks and, if approved, work could start by the end of May.