New community hub on old Dunipace Juniors social club site

People with learning disabilities are to help to create a community hub on the former site of Dunipace Juniors social club, after Falkirk Council agreed to sell the land.

By Kirsty Paterson
Thursday, 21st October 2021, 3:49 pm
An artist's impression of the development.
An artist's impression of the development.

The 1,988 square metres has been used as a car park by Dunipace Juniors FC since a fire destroyed the social club in 2017.

Now, Denny-based Stoneywood Community Project – which supports adults with learning disabilities – say they want to develop a community garden that everyone can enjoy as a meeting space, while helping adults with disabilities develop confidence and skills in horticulture and DIY.

A meeting of Falkirk Council’s executive heard that several local partners will be involved, including environmental groups, local schools, community organisations and Dunipace Juniors Football Club.

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The area will become a hub for people with learning disabilities.

The football club, which is supportive of the proposal, will also be involved, helping to provide health and fitness opportunities.

The intention would be to include a small community café on the land and to offer therapeutic activities for the local community to be involved in.A report to the executive stated: “The vision is for the community garden to be a social meeting place in Denny encouraging local parents, families and older people to meet and socialise there and be a place where local community organisations can meet and deliver their services to people in the area.”

Councillors heard that the District Valuer had valued the land at £10,000 and this has been agreed by Stoneywood.

Councillors agreed to declare the land surplus to requirements which means the sale can go ahead although planning permission will still be needed before anything is finalised.

A legal agreement regarding rights of access will also need to be reached with neighbours Dunipace Juniors FC and Stoneywood must meet any legal costs for this.

Councillors warmly welcomed the plans for the vacant ground and agreed that the project showed once again how football clubs can play a vital role in their communities.

Boab Ramsay, of Stoneywood Community Project, said: “This project will enhance the lives, health and wellbeing of the people we support, and that of the local community.

“We are looking forward to work in partnership with local organisations and the community to make this project a success.”