SPORTSDESK COMMENT: Rugby club’s lost appeal casts cloud over sports village

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In a week when many sports fans in Scarborough were celebrating that the Weaponness Leisure Village took a step forward, there was some worrying news from the town’s largest sporting club.

Scarborough RUFC’s appeal against not being allowed to play amplified music or jingles was dismissed, following a public inquiry into Scarborough Borough Council’s refusal to relax the restrictions.

This decision brought to an end a lengthy dispute, which began when neighbours complained about noise coming from the club Tannoy system.

The Silver Royd club only wanted the restrictions lifted for four weekends per year for no more than eight hours a day over two consecutive days at special events or junior festivals.

I have been to the club to watch several games and also undertook a boot camp there last year, so I am aware how far away these neighbours are from the pitches and the club.

The decision has upset the rugby club and its many supporters, but other sporting fans have been affected by this decision.

Scarborough Athletic are hopeful of returning to play football in the town at the sports village at Weaponness, but surely there are many more neighbours in close proximity to this ground?

Fans have voiced concerns after hearing of the rugby club decision.

Will music be allowed to be played at the new ground before and during Boro games? Would the PA system have to be turned down to meet approved levels?

Maybe the team announcements should be whispered?

If the club manage to fill the proposed 2,000 seat venue - which has scope to expand, the residents of Weaponness and the surrounding area will certainly hear plenty of ‘noise’, but surely this is all part and parcel of living near a sports ground?

The rugby club runs many junior teams on a Sunday, from the under-sixes and under-sevens to the under-16s, and are helping fill a void for young sportspeople left by the demise of Scarborough FC.

The sports village will hopefully help Scarborough Athletic’s junior sides have a new base in town, as well as a venue for local Saturday and Sunday League cup finals, so let’s hope the noise issues at Weaponness have been thoroughly examined by all parties or the current and future grass roots sports participants will once again be the losers.

At the moment the Scarborough & District Minor League finals are staged at Queensgate in Bridlington over two days over May Day Bank Holiday weekend, if they were to return to Scarborough at the new village surely they’d create a similar noise to the rugby club junior festivals?

It is great news that the a developer has been chosen for the long-awaited sports village, but you can understand the scepticism among local sports fans and participants when decisions such as the jingles and music ban are upheld.

On many occasions, even from Newby, I have heard the various concerts from the Open Air Theatre, but I’ve never complained. Concerts are bound to create noise, surely the same can be said about a sporting event?