Work gets under way at sports village site

Ground investigation work is to be carried out on the site of Scarborough’s long-awaited sports village to pave the way for the multi-million pound development as it edges closer to fruition.

Specialist contractors will begin work on the Weaponness car park and neighbouring land from today, with the investigation expected to last a fortnight.

The information gathered will be shared with the three developers on a shortlist to submit detailed plans for the site.

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Scarborough Borough Council projects manager, Chris Bourne, said: “The contractors will be taking borehole samples and drilling trial pits to determine the ground conditions and that will assist in any future foundation design.”

The need to boost sports provision became acute when Scarborough FC’s 128-year history ended in June 2007 because of crippling debts.

The sports village will be a home for the fledgling football team, Scarborough Athletic FC, which has been forced to play its home games at Bridlington.

It will include a 2,000-capacity football stadium, an eight-lane swimming pool and a brand new sports centre with facilities for ball games and racquet sports and it is hoped it will be open in time for the start of the 2014/15 football season.

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In September 2010 the council launched a bid to recruit the developer to oversee the creation of the sports village on the Weaponness Valley site, which is owned by the authority. A decision on the preferred developer is likely to be taken in the autumn, once the three finalists have submitted detailed proposals.

To finance the scheme, two other council-owned sites – the former McCain Stadium in Seamer Road, which was the home of the now defunct Scarborough FC, and the Filey Road Sports Centre – need to be sold off.

The successful bidder will be allowed to develop the stadium and sports centre sites to recoup the cost of building the sports village.