Scarborough Athletic chairman Trevor Bull was delighted to see the new Adverset Stand full of fans after it was officially opened on Saturday.
The Mayor of Scarborough, Cllr Hazel Lynskey, unveiled the new structure at the Flamingo Land Stadium before Boro’s league opener against Buxton, which ended in a 1-1 draw.
Bull said: “It was great to see the stand full of fans on Saturday, and my daughter and grandchildren were in the stand and they said they loved it. I didn’t get chance to watch any of the game from there but just looking at the new stand there was a wow factor.
“We have had lots of positive feedback on the day and since, which is great news as the main thing was to help improve the matchday experience for fans.
“The construction of the new Adverset Stand is the culmination of a two-year process since we returned to the town.
“The success of the club since our return and the way that the town has embraced the club has meant that we quickly realised that we required more seated and covered terracing.”
The new 1,138 capacity covered stand includes 336 seats and terracing for 802 spectators, increasing the overall capacity of the stadium to 2,833, providing the extra seats and covered raised standing that the ground needed.
Bull added: “Who would have thought when the new club was formed in 2007, that 12 years later we would be playing in front of large crowds again in such an excellent stadium?
“It is testament to the hard work of our club officials and volunteers as well as the loyal support of our fans.”
“With the help of funding from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund and Scarborough Borough Council via the Flamingo Land naming rights fund, we have been able to provide our supporters with the facilities they deserve.”
He added: “With extra financial backing from our supporters, we have been able to deliver the project on time and ready for the new season.
“We are grateful to Stadium Solutions, JTW Contracts and Custom Call Electricals for their excellent work on the project and to the council for supporting us throughout.”
As part of the project, the club has also significantly improved disabled spectator provision with the creation of an additional eight covered wheelchair spaces in the existing seated stand at the upper concourse level, with direct level access to refreshments, toilet provision, and accessible parking facilities.
The project was made possible by a £150,000 grant from the Premier League, which is delivered through the Football Stadia Improvement Fund – the sister organisation of the Football Foundation.
Alongside the FSIF funding, £100,000 came from Flamingo Land for the stadium naming rights, money that Scarborough Borough Council ring-fenced for ground improvements, with the rest of the funding coming from the club’s supporters.
Cllr Liz Colling, Scarborough Borough Council Cabinet Member for Economy, Communities and Commercial, said: “Since the opening of the Flamingo Land Stadium as part of Scarborough Sports Village in 2017, Scarborough Athletic and community football have gone from strength to strength.
"It’s wonderful to see the next stage of the journey completed with the opening of the new accessible stand, which has been enthusiastically welcomed by spectators and players.”
Peter McCormick OBE, Chairman of the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, said: “My congratulations go to Scarborough Athletic for their efforts throughout this project,
"I’m delighted for everyone associated with The Seadogs. It is fantastic that the stand is open in time for the new season and I hope it contributes to continued success at the club.
"The FSIF, thanks to investment from the Premier League, works hard to support clubs as they work to move up through the game and this is a great example of what that money can achieve.
“It’s fair to say that Scarborough supporters went through some turbulent years at the turn of the century, but Scarborough Athletic are now well and truly on the up. I hope the club is able to make the most of their ground improvements and that their fans enjoy the new, more comfortable spectator provision.”