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Scottish rugby and football to receive £3.15m facilities boost

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A £3.15m grant has been created to develop a Scotland-wide network of full-sized 3G pitches for youth football and rugby.

The CashBack for Pitches Fund will use money seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act to help install synthetic grass pitches, with a focus on projects working with young people in areas that experience problems with anti-social behaviour and crime.

The grants - of up to £300,000 - will also prioritise pitch facilities that will be used to drive youth participation and development at local football and rugby clubs, with the Scottish FA, Scottish Rugby, sportscotland and non-profit environmental body Waste Recycling Environmental Limited (WREN) all involved in selecting the successful projects.

The funding comprises £2m from the Scottish Government's CashBack for Communities programme, coupled with £1m from Sportscotland and £150,000 from WREN.

The CashBack funding has come from a £2m payment from Aberdeen-based oil and gas company Abbot Group - the first tranche of £5.6m to be recovered after the firm used the Crown Office's self-reporting initiative to admit benefitting from corrupt payments made in an overseas deal.

Stewart Harris, CEO of Sportscotland, said: "This is an excellent collaboration between sportscotland, the Scottish Government, and WREN which is resulting in over £3m being invested in state-of-the-art 3G football and rugby dual-use pitches.

"Scotland's sporting facilities are the best they have ever been and today's announcement further underlines our collective commitment to continue to invest in this area."

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A £3.15m grant has been created to develop a Scotland-wide network of full-sized 3G pitches for youth football and rugby.
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