Raeburn Place's Clubs

The ground at Raeburn Place is owned by the Edinburgh Academical Club (EAC), the alumni body for former pupils of the Edinburgh Academy. In 2008 EAC formed a wholly owned subsidiary, Raeburn Place Sport Limited (RPSL), to manage the ground on behalf of the Club. The objectives and duties of RPSL with regard to the ground (in terms of legal agreements) are that it is:

“……. to provide, encourage and promote sporting activities and social functions at Raeburn Place for the EAC’s  rugby [EAFC] and cricket [EACC] clubs and the Edinburgh Academy, as well as to encourage use by the general public of the facilities at Raeburn Place and the promotion of the historic nature of Raeburn Place.”

The Edinburgh Academical Football Club (EAFC) and the Edinburgh Academical Cricket Club (EACC) were historically part of the EAC and were “closed” clubs, drawing their members exclusively from the former pupils of the Edinburgh Academy. This changed in the early 1970s when both clubs became “open”. Both clubs now have a diverse membership base.

BATs, a community based rugby club that provides youth rugby across north Edinburgh, was established at Raeburn Place in 2004. Many of the current players of the EAFC 1XV have come up through this youth development section and are former pupils of a number of local schools. The importance of BATs to the EAFC and the local community should not be underestimated.

EAFC and EACC are community inclusive clubs at all levels. The proposed development will only serve to enhance this by allowing greater access to sporting provision across the community.

 

Previous 'Minded To Grant' Scheme

With a view to providing updated facilities at Raeburn Place, EAC joined forces with Festival Inns, the then owners of the Raeburn House Hotel, and submitted a planning application to redevelop the ground and the hotel. These plans achieved 'Minded to Grant' status from the City of Edinburgh Council in 2011. Unfortunately Festival Inns went into administration in 2011 causing the plans to fall through. The Administrators have now sold the Raeburn House Hotel and the property has been awarded full Planning Consent for a new scheme. The Club is therefore unable to proceed with the previously 'Minded to Grant' scheme.

The abortive deal with Festival Inns left EAFC and EACC without a permanent clubhouse or changing facilities, following their demolition by Festival Inns. The Clubs are therefore using portacabins at considerable expense. As the ongoing cost of these portacabins is being met by donations from individuals it is not sustainable over any period other than the very short term.

EACC were forced to decamp to the Edinburgh Academy wicket in order to provide more suitable facilities for league matches. Howeve, as they are now unable to offer sufficient home ties during the school term, Cricket Scotland is considering removing EACC from the league. The proposed development plans include the reinstatement of a cricket square at Raeburn Place and this, along with the improved facilities in the proposals, would enable EACC to return home and satisfy Cricket Scotland.

The development plans are therefore essential for the survival of both EAFC and EACC.

 

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