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Princess Anne opens two multi-million pound sport centres

Gymnasts from the North-East have been showing the Princess Royal their impressive moves after she dropped in to officially open sports centres in Banff and Macduff.

And it wasn’t just the gymnasts who wanted to show Princess Anne what they were made of; other local sports stars and musicians popped in to entertain the attendees.

The two council-run facilities cost a combined total of £12.7 million, and each has provided the public with a gym, sports hall, all-weather pitch and swimming pool.

It would appear that Princess Anne was impressed with how the money had been invested and the great opportunities the centres have provided for the public.

As reported in Evening Express she said: “The achievement here is considerable, not least in bricks and mortar but in meeting the interesting people who are accessing this building for exercising, sport and socialising.

“I am grateful that you didn’t mind asking me to come here and see what you have achieved.”

Princess Anne also commented on the fact that despite the projects taking a little time to complete, each has definitely been worth the wait.

“This is a vital part of your community and particularly for all ages to be able to enjoy,” she continued.

Some local sports stars were even lucky enough to meet the Princess Royal and show her more of the facilities.

17-year-old Monica Wilson, who plays football for Deveronvale Ladies FC, was one such person.

She explained how Princess Anne took great interest in her sporting past and achievements.

Reported in the Evening Express, Monica said: “She was asking what sport I played, where I trained and where I’ve gone with football.

“I was capped with Scotland a couple of years ago, and I’ve always trained twice a week at Deveron Sports Centre.

“It has provided a great pathway for us because it’s got an astroturf pitch and it is available in all weathers which is great for training.”

This wasn’t the first time it has been planned for Princess Anne to visit the new sports centres.

Back in January fierce winds prevented her from attending an opening event.

Aberdeenshire Provost Bill Howatson said, “We were delighted to hear that Her Royal Highness was keen to return and see the facilities for herself.”

So it would seem Princess Anne’s royal visit put a smile on the faces of many sports enthusiasts across the North-East.

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