Dunfermline Athletic

Dunfermline Academy of Sport

Date: Tuesday, 26th Sep 2006

A unique partnership between DAFC and local business community to operate a new Dunfermline Academy of Sport through a charity called The Pars Trust.

DAFC is pleased to announce that it has acquired the five a side business and leasehold interest in the Pitreavie Playing Fields from Powerleague PLC. From 23rd September 2006 the operation of the business will be handed over to The Pars Trust.

Pitreavie is currently the training centre of the Pars First and Youth Development Teams as well as a proportion of the DAFC Community Coaching programme.

The commercial operation of the all –weather pitches and the hire of the grass pitches to the public and local organisations will continue as normal.

The aim is now to establish a development programme, which will gradually upgrade the facilities to a standard, which will match the best in Scotland. Taking this forward will be the responsibility of THE PARS TRUST. The Trust will re-invest profits made and source additional funding to enhance facilities at the site. The Trust will be chaired by local businessman Keith Punler and Trustees will include Margaret Ross and Gordon Milne from the Pars Supporters Trust, Alastair Hibbert, Project Manager at DAFC and Tracey Martin, Marketing Director, DAFC.

The existing Pars Community Programme will transfer to the Trust and it is intended to continue to grow and develop this highly successful initiative. Coaching will be provided in a newly enhanced partnership with the SFA and Fife Council.

Keith Punler talking on behalf of the Pars Trust commented “ I was approached about taking on the challenge and was enthused and excited by the vision and objectives of the club. I know I speak for all Trustees in saying we will be doing our utmost to progress this exciting community opportunity.”

Bill Hodgins, Chief Executive of DAFC “I was delighted that the Club, as part of the acquisition, had secured First Team training facilities for the next fifty years and that this would be a major platform for the future success of the club”.

Jim Leishman added “Even as they stand our training facilities are excellent and I am looking forward to seeing the development progress over the year. The fact that the plans cover all ages, boys, girls and other local clubs will see a real community project emerge and hopefully also some quality players for our first team squad. From mini kickers (Age 3+) to 1st team that’s the plan”

Sean Tracey, Chief Executive of Powerleague “We are delighted the Powerleague site at Pitreavie has been acquired by DAFC. I am well aware of the local significance of the site and its historical ties to the football club and wider community. The site did not fit into Powerleague’s wider strategic aims and long term plans, but we will work closely with the club to ensure a smooth handover and the continued success of the site going forward.”

DAFC already have a very comprehensive community programme which offer children of all abilities football coaching from the age of three up to thirteen and currently sees upwards of 600 children per week. It is the intention to further grow and develop this initiative.

DAFC’s Youth Development Initiative is also be based at Pitreavie the aim of the Youth Development Initiative being to train and develop the potential football stars of the future and runs teams from the age of Under 11’s through to Under 17’s.

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