Kirkintilloch Rob Roy aiming to return home for next season

It's been five years since Rob Roy played their final game at Adamslie Park
It's been five years since Rob Roy played their final game at Adamslie Park

Rob Roy say they remain on course to end their exile from Kirkintilloch by the start of next season.

It’s been five years since the club quit their former home at Adamslie Park (above), since when they have been playing home games at Cumbernauld United pending a proposed move into a new community development at West of Park Burn.

And while the move is taking longer than many would have hoped, the club says the project - being undertaken alongside East Dunbartonshire Council - is now making significant progress with the aim of having the facility operational in time for the start of the 2020-21 season.

In a joint statement posted on the club website, the club and council say required legal structures and documentation are being finalised between the parties, discussions with contractors regarding costs are nearing conclusion and the commercial terms of how the facility will operate have all been wrapped up.

There has also been increased activity on-site recently with engineers carrying out testing work and environmental officers analysing water samples.

An updated project plan and timescales will be presented by the club at the next project meeting with the council, due to take place next week.

Club president Neil Anderson said: “The club is as keen as ever to get back to Kirkintilloch so that the community knows it has a local team it can go and support. It is also important for all the loyal supporters that we achieve this.

“The legal work is ongoing, and as all club members know, we are having to set up a limited company structure for the club going forward. We aim to be in a position of getting members signed up to the NewCo at our agm in September.

“We have made substantial progress with the project and although we require some additional time to finalise a few matters, I am sure that all supporters will appreciate that we must address them now so that future issues do not arise.

“We continue to be as fully committed to getting the new facility built throughout this challenging time for the club and we very much appreciate the patience and support of the local community in the five years since we left Adamslie Park.”

The joint statement between the club and the council confirmed: “As with all major projects, there have been hurdles to overcome to meet both statutory and regulatory requirements and this has had an impact on timescales to ensure all matters are properly addressed.

“It is still the aspiration that the community football facility will be operational next year in time for the 2020/21 football season. All efforts are now focussed on producing a robust project plan to ensure the development is delivered to this timescale.

“Although more time has been required for the preparation stage, both parties are confident that it will pay off in the long run and that these small steps of progress will lead to a giant leap for Kirkintilloch and the community.

Councillor Susan Murray, member for Kirkintilloch East and North Twechar and vice-convener of the council’s Place, Neighbourhood and Corporate Assets Committee, said: “Projects of this nature invariably can take more time to bring to fruition and I’m pleased at the progress that has been made with support from council officers.

“I look foward to matters being finalised over the coming months.”

The new stadium is expected to include roofed seating, five-a-side pitches, floodlghts, social club and toilet facilities.