Football came back to Scarborough on Saturday after a decade in exile.
The result may have not gone to plan as Scarborough Athletic lost 4-1 to the youngsters from Sheffield United, but it was still a day to remember for the supporters.
Boro had been playing their football 20 miles down the Yorkshire coast in Bridlington since the winding up of Scarborough FC in 2007.
But after years of hard work from supporters and a tireless board, they finally came home to the new 2,070-capacity Flamingo Land Stadium on Saturday.
Welcome To Yorkshire’s Gary Verity said: “It is amazing that there was a game 10 years to the date that the club last played in the town.
“For the hundreds of supporters, who have religiously gone to Bridlington for the past 10 years, to be back here in Scarborough watching football in this brand new, beautiful stadium is just fantastic.”
So much hard work and effort has been put in to get this club home and finally we have achieved it. Now we have to go onwards and upwards from this point.Trevor Bull
Chairman Trevor Bull added: “It is just great to be back in Scarborough.
“So much hard work and effort has been put in to get this club home and finally we have achieved it.
“Now we have to go onwards and upwards from this point.”
In the end, the Blades were just too sharp for Boro, running out comfortable winners. The first ever goal scored at the Flamingo Land Stadium was a frustrating own goal, when Boro’s Matty Turnbull forced the ball past his own keeper. But the hosts levelled just before the break through Jimmy Beadle.
A much fresher United side finished the job in the second half though, with a brace from Jake Wright and one from Rhys Norrington-Davies making it 4-1.
Boro manager Steve Kittrick said: “It wasn’t about the result today, it was about the fans and the club’s return home.
“It was a great occasion and hopefully we’ll be able to build from here.”
It was a particularly poignant moment for Beadle, who is a local lad who played for the former Scarborough FC before moving away and returning for this season.
“I think it was written in the stars for me to score the first goal, I’m absolutely over the moon with it,” he said.
Boro play in the Northern Premier League Division One North, the eighth tier of English football. They reached the play-offs last season but Ossett Town claimed a semi-final triumph in what proved to be Athletic’s final game in Bridlington.
Their first game at their new stadium was a 2,070 sell-out and more than 1,000 have been snapped up for the visit of Leeds United’s Under-23s in a fortnight.
For those attending who remember the old days of the McCain Stadium there was a familiar sight, the old McCain Stadium gates – put into storage as the bulldozers moved in – which now proudly stand at the entrance to the new stadium.