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27/01/14 09:25

Games Legacy for Borders

Scottish Borders challenged to make the most of Games

Borderers have been urged to ensure a lasting legacy from the Commonwealth Games.

Commonwealth Games Minister Shona Robison made the call today as she visited a range of Legacy 2014 projects and programmes benefiting local communities.

The Scottish Borders have benefited from many Legacy programmes and projects including £250,000 in funding through the Legacy 2014 Active Places Fund and BIG 2014 Communities programme. Ms Robison today saw how this investment and the legacy of the Commonwealth Games is making a difference to local people. The visits included were:

  • Tweedbank Community Sport Hub. One of ten Community Sports Hub in the region and one of three facilities benefitting from the Legacy 2014 Active Places Fund.
  • A local business to see how the Legacy 2014 Employer Recruitment Incentive. Scheme is providing local young people with training and employment opportunities.
  • Youth Legacy Ambassadors who are helping local communities engage in the Games
  • The Galashiels Sports Facilities, improved through funding from CashBack for Communities.

Minister for Sport and Commonwealth Games Shona Robison said:

“The Commonwealth Games will be Scotland’s biggest ever sporting and cultural event and I want us to continue to build on the Games legacy across the whole of Scotland.

“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 Games in the Scottish Borders.

“It been good to see how Scottish Borders Council and the Borders Sport & Leisure Trust have both embraced the Games to bring the local community together in the spirit of the Commonwealth.

“However, this isn’t to say that there aren’t more ways for Borderers to get involved. Local businesses, individuals and community groups interested in everything from regeneration to the arts should take the time to have a look at the legacy programmes and projects. Now is the time to be part of it and never early enough to begin leaving a legacy for your local area.”

The visit began at Tweedbank Community Sport Hub in Galashiels, the first of 10 hubs established in the region to date. The Minister met local primary school children and unveiled a Legacy 2014 plaque.

Through the Active Schools Network, school children across the region have been getting more active. All of the Borders secondary schools and four out of five primary schools are now meeting the two hours per week PE target.

School leavers are also gaining from the Games. While visiting the Waggon Inn in Kelso, the Minister met Ainsley Robertson, a chef at the restaurant who has received funding through the Legacy 2014 Employer Recruitment Incentive delivered by Skills Development Scotland (SDS). This has helped development of Ainsley’s professional cooking qualifications while remaining in employment. Ainsley is one of four young people in the area who are benefiting from Modern Apprenticeships through the programme.

Catherine Thomas, Commonwealth Games Legacy Manager at SDS, said:

“The Commonwealth Games will be a great spectacle this summer but we want to make sure it leaves a legacy across Scotland long after the closing ceremony. It is great to see the Employer Recruitment Incentive is already helping us to achieve that goal by giving businesses like The Waggon Inn the financial help they need to take on a Modern Apprentice and develop a skilled workforce.”

While at the Inn, two Youth Legacy Ambassadors Lisa Thomson and Carly McAllen, both from Hawick High School, met the Minister to talk about the legacy events they have created for their community.

At the opening of the new office of Borders Sports and Leisure in Galashiels the Minister met the team and discussed sporting participation in the Borders.

Ewan Jackson, Chief Executive of Borders Sport & Leisure said:

“We were delighted to welcome the Minister to the Scottish Borders and to demonstrate some of the ways we are working together in this region to promote participation in activities, develop sporting ability and create a lasting Games legacy in the Borders.”

The Minister finished the day by watching potential future athletes in action at the Galashiels Sport Facility.

Notes to editors

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Joe Walton : 0131 244 2642 / 07815 492516

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