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Forres Skate Park Initiative hires consultant Alan Jones Associates to carry out planning

By Garry McCartney

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Inverness Skate Park.
Inverness Skate Park.

CAMPAIGNERS for a skate park in Forres have selected the professional to complete its preliminary planning.

Forres Skate Park Initiative (FSPI) put out to tender for a business plan, feasibility and option appraisal and have chosen Inverness-based strategic, management and project consultants, Alan Jones Associates (AJA) to carry out the work.

Mr Jones said: “We will only begin once the funding has been secured, but we are hoping to engage the community in gathering evidence of need and support for a wheeled sports facility in Forres.”

FSPI chairman Shaun Moat confirmed Mr Jones’ services cover all aspects of cultural and leisure activities to best meet client’s needs, and he has a proven track record in attracting external funding. AJA have secured over £2 million in recent years for wheeled sports and play projects.

Mr Moat said: “After careful scoring of the three tenders we received, Alan Jones was the best. He has extensive experience in building skate parks across Scotland, including Inverness, Raigmore and Muir of Ord skate parks. The trustees are really excited the project has taken another step towards delivering an Olympic-standard facility for all to use.”

Front-running suggestions for the skate park site are the old Tesco site between Caroline Street and Gordon Street; common good land off Bogton Road; Mannachie playing fields; Grant Park; or Roysvale.

Mr Jones said: “We will investigate the chosen sites using a tried and tested options appraisal framework. Once a preferred site is identified, we will check with Moray Council’s contaminated land team, and if required engage an external company on a soils investigation survey.

“We will investigate all aspects of ownership and management for the proposed new facilities and make recommendations in the feasibility study. We will provide a self-completion skills audit for the company board members, identifying if there are any skills and experience gaps and how these might be addressed.

“We will provide a full business risk register within the business plan, identifying all potentially significant risks, and what and who are responsible for mitigating against these. We will create a funding strategy in the feasibility study, which clearly identifies the key potential funders, along with a description of the funder’s requirements and the likelihood of these grants being available for this project.”

To get involved with FSPI, email shaun@forresskatepark.org.uk

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